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Over the last few years, the human body's microbial population has been the subject of numerous discussions and controversies. But few topics have sparked as much interest as the concept of fecal microbiota transplantation, or FMT. This rather easy procedure has become a lightning rod for debates ranging from its effectiveness to ethical issues regarding donations.
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As a parent, your job is to protect your kids from harm and stories of superbugs and flesh-eating viruses may have you liberally basting your children with hand sanitizer, and cleaning your home with chemicals that promise to send bacteria packing. Well, put down the bleach and put your feet up. As it turns out, dirt is actually good for our kids!
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By adding hundreds of species to the colon, the bacterium simply cannot compete and ends up losing its grip on the gut. Eventually, the infection clears and the individual returns to normal.
The premise of using bacteria to combat bacteria isn't new. It has shown promise to combat the potentially lethal Clostridium difficile and also has helped to resolve other gastrointestinal disorders, particularly in children. The concept of transplantation appeared to be transferrable to the mouth.
The date was 2004, and the setting a hospital in Quebec. When BI/NAP1/027 struck, the world was taken aback by an incredible ferocity that infected over 1,700 people and left hundreds dead. But this was only the beginning as TCD and BI/NAP1/027 have since spread worldwide. But what can be done to stop this rogue germ agent?
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Fecal therapy is here to stay. With the number of options to treat acute and chronic gastrointestinal disorders shrinking, a means to not only treat but also cure cannot be disregarded. People may never get used to the smell of fecal microbiota therapy, but I know they'll definitely get used to the benefits. Let's rePOOPulate.
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