13 June 2016

Testing poop pill to cure obesity

In one of my first posts, I was wondering whether we could lose weight if we replaced our gut's micro-inhabitants with the best species:

'Interestingly, if you transfer the gut microbes from an obese mouse into a special, lean, and germ-free mouse, the latter becomes obese.' Extract from 'A cure for Obesity?'
How can that happen? Our colon is home to so many different species, they are bound to have different pros and cons: I also addressed this in a previous post (follow HERE if you'd like to know more).
Funnily, I had finished my post by saying:
'Now, I know what you would like to know, and I would like to know it too:
  • Does the opposite experiment work i.e. would transferring lean mice microbiota into obese mice make obese mice lean?
  • Would it work in humans too?'                        Extract from 'A Cure for obesity'?
Well, well, well, a few months later, started a new American study that looked at whether or not having a fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) would help people who suffer from obesity.
FMT is a new technique that could help a lot of people and has proven very effective in curing C.diff infections.



The way they will assess the efficacy is by comparing poop content, body weight, and insulin sensitivity (a marker of metabolic syndrome such as diabetes) between people who received either placebo or FMT poop pills. Neither patients,  or their doctor, will have any idea whether they received the placebo or the poop pill, their pills are marked and only the central lab analysing the results knows the secret.

The major difference though is that most clinical trials use a sludge of poo inserted via a tube into patients' guts, but this clinical trial is using freeze-dried poop pills!

You might wonder where this poo comes from, but, believe it or not, you can donate your poo! It will be assessed for its quality and abundance of beneficial micro-organisms and other markers that show that you are a lean and metabolically healthy donor.

When they will look at patients' poos before and after FMT treatment, they will compare them with the donor's poo signature and see whether or not they look more similar after FMT.

This is the first trial to address obesity and metabolic syndrome with FMT and will complete in September 2016. If this study is successful, seeing poop pills at your chemist might not be too far away...
I can't wait to read the results!!

Would you swallow a poo pill if it helped you with that weight that no amount of healthy eating and exercise has been able to shift? 
I'd love to read your opinion in the comments section, but please do refrain from suggesting that all overweight people are lazy as it's simply not true. Thank you.

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