FMT Washed microbiota transplantation improves symptoms and intestinal barrier function in patients with functional bowel disorders: a propensity-score matching analysis (Jan 2024, n=68)

Fecal Microbiota Transplants

Michael Harrop

Active member
Jul 6, 2023



Alterations in the intestinal microbiota may play a role in the pathogenesis of functional bowel disorders (FBDs). Probiotics are widely used to improve intestinal dysbacteriosis in FBDs. In the context of FBDs, washed microbiota transplantation (WMT) appear to be a promising therapeutic option. We aimed to compare probiotics with WMT by using a propensity-score matching analysis (PSMA).


We conducted a retrospective investigation of 103 patients with FBDs, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), functional constipation (FC), functional diarrhea (FDr), functional abdominal bloating (FAB). Patients were divided into the WMT group or probiotics group (taking probiotics capsules). Data on the following parameters were matched for PSMA: age; sex; disease course; body mass index; anxiety; insomnia; tobacco smoking; alcohol consumption; and levels of D-lactate, diamine oxidase, and lipopolysaccharide. Intestinal barrier function (IBF) and symptoms were evaluated both before and after treatment initiation. Prognostic factors were assessed by Cox proportional hazards regression analysis.


PSMA identified in 34 matched pairs (11 IBS, 12 FC, 7 FDr, and 4 FAB in the probiotics group and 14 IBS, 13 FC, 5 FDr, and 2 FAB in the WMT group. Improvement of FBD symptoms was greater with WMT than probiotics (P = 0.002). The WMT group had significantly fewer patients with intestinal barrier damage than the probiotics group (38.2% vs. 67.6%, P = 0.041). This improvement of FBD with WMT was further reflected as a reduction in D-lactate levels (P = 0.031). Increased D-lactate levels which were identified as a prognostic factor for FBDs (HR = 0.248, 95%CI 0.093–0.666, P = 0.006) in multivariate Cox regression analysis.


WMT could improve symptoms and IBF in patients with FBDs. Increased D-lactate levels in patients with FBDs may predict a favorable response to WMT treatment.
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