Abnormal Intestinal Microbiome in Medical Disorders and Potential Reversibility by Fecal Microbiota Transplantation

Herbert L. DuPont, Zhi Dong Jiang, Andrew W. DuPont, Netanya S. Utay

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Reduction in diversity of the intestinal microbiome (dysbiosis) is being identified in many disease states, and studies are showing important biologic contributions of microbiome to health and disease. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) is being evaluated as a way to reverse dysbiosis in diseases and disorders in an attempt to improve health. The published literature was reviewed to determine the value of FMT in the treatment of medical disorders for which clinical trials have recently been conducted. FMT is effective in treating recurrent C. difficile infection in one or two doses, with many healthy donors providing efficacious fecal-derived products. In inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), FMT may lead to remission in approximately one-third of moderate-to-severe illnesses with one study suggesting that more durable FMT responses may be seen when used once medical remissions have been achieved. Donor products differ in their efficacy in treatment of IBD. Combining donor products has been one way to increase the potential value of FMT in treating chronic disorders. FMT is being explored in a variety of clinical settings affecting different organ systems outside CDI, with positive preliminary signals, in treatment of functional constipation, immunotherapy-induced colitis, neurodegenerative disease, as well as prevention of cancer-related disorders like graft versus host disease and decolonization of patients with recurrent urinary tract infection due to antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Currently, intense research is underway to see how the microbiome products like FMT can be harnessed for health benefits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)741-756
Number of pages16
JournalDigestive Diseases and Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Clostridium difficile
  • Dysbiosis
  • Fecal microbiota transplantation
  • Microbiome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Gastroenterology


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