HMT as a Treatment for Different Disease Conditions and Symptoms
Irritable bowel syndrome is condition which affects the digestive system, mostly the large intestine, and sometimes also the small intestine. It is also known as irritable colon, mucous colitis, spastic colon or spastic colitis, and nervous stomach. In some locations, it affects up to 1 in 5 of the population. In Hong Kong, it is estimated that 10 percent of the population is affected by IBS. It is a chronic condition with fluctuating symptoms including:
Why consider Human Microbiota Transplant (HMT) for relief of symptoms related to IBS?
Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a complex GI condition with multiple factors, including hypersensitivity, altered brain-gut interaction, inflammation, and imbalance of the gut microbiota (dysbiosis). Because the gut microbiota are associated with symptoms in some IBS patients, HMT has been studied in the treatment of IBS. More than 1,500 IBS patients have been treated with using HMT, with a variety of results ranging from 36% resolution to 64% resolution after HMT. In the most recent clinical trial on IBS, more than 60% of IBS patients showed an improvement of their symptoms after fecal microbiota transplantation.3
Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: UC and CD
Ulcerative Colitis is one of the two main forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The other main form of IBD is a condition known as Crohn’s disease. In UC, tiny ulcers develop on the surface of the colon lining and these may bleed or produce pus. The inflammation usually begins in the rectum and lower colon, but it may affect the entire colon.
Why consider Human Microbiota Transplant (HMT) for symptoms related Ulcerative Colitis (UC)?
There are consistent changes to the gut microbiota in IBD patients. At a high-level, these changes may be characterized a decrease in the diversity of the gut microbiome, shifting into a state of imbalance (known as dysbiosis). HMT has been studied in patients with UC, producing positive results. In a published review of the data, 201 out of 555 (36%) UC patients achieved clinical remission after a course of HMT treatment with no major side effects observed. In a recent study published in 2017 done in Australia, 27% of UC patients benefited from FMT compared with 11% in the placebo group.
CD is a chronic, recurrent inflammatory disease of the intestinal tract. The two primary sites for Crohn’s disease are the ileum, which is the last portion of the small bowel (ileitis, regional enteritis), and the colon (Crohn’s colitis). The condition begins as small, microscopic nests of inflammation which persist and enlarge. The lining of the bowel can then become ulcerated and the bowel wall thickened. Eventually, the bowel may become narrowed or obstructed and surgery may be needed.
Why consider Human Microbiota Transplant (HMT) for symptoms related to Crohn’s Disease?
There are consistent changes to the gut microbiota in IBD patients. At a high-level, these changes may be characterized as a decrease in the diversity of the gut microbiome, shifting into a state of imbalance (known as dysbiosis). The goal of HMT is to restore the balance in the gut microbiome. For this reason, HMT has been studied as a procedure for the management of the symptoms of Crohn’s Disease. In a recent meta-analysis, 42 out of 82 (50.5%) CD patients achieved clinical remission after a course of fecal microbiota transplant treatment with no major side effects observed1.