Intended for healthcare professionals


Faecal transplantation . . . and other stories

BMJ 2020; 369 doi: (Published 01 April 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;369:m1208

Faecal transplants for obesity

Although the underlying mechanisms are a matter for speculation, variations in gut microbiota are credited with several effects on systemic metabolism, including a propensity to obesity. A trial examined the idea directly by randomising 24 adults with obesity and insulin resistance either to weekly oral faecal microbiota transplantation from healthy lean donors or to placebo (PLoS Med doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1003051). At 12 weeks, most participants in the active group showed shifts in faecal microbial composition, suggesting that microbiota engraftment had occurred. However, none showed an increase in insulin sensitivity or a reduction in body weight.

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