OpenBiome brings its fecal microbiota transplantation treatments to Europe

The stool bank is working with the APC Microbiome Institute in Cork, Ireland to bring rigorously screened, ready-to-use fecal microbiota preparations to European patients suffering from recurrent C. difficile infections. 

Cork, Ireland – OpenBiome announced today that it will make its microbiota preparations for fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) available to patients across Europe suffering from recurrent C. difficile infections.

C. difficile, one of the most common hospital-acquired infections, is an aggressive intestinal illness that can cause debilitating and potentially life-threatening diarrhea. C. difficile infects an estimated 145,000 people in the EU each year. Each case costs between €5,000-€15,000 to treat, resulting in estimated costs of over €3.7 billion annually to European healthcare systems.

FMT is a powerful treatment option for this infection. While standard antibiotic therapies resolve multiply recurrent C. difficile infection about 30% of the time, FMT has a cure rate of 85-90%. However, the expense and inconvenience of finding and screening suitable stool donors often limits the use of FMT.

OpenBiome, a nonprofit stool bank, overcomes barriers by providing hospitals and clinics with rigorously screened fecal microbiota preparations. By dividing the donor screening costs across multiple treatments prepared from each donor, OpenBiome provides treatments for a fraction of the cost of either a physician-directed process or of antibiotic treatment options. Founded by a team of microbiologists and public health advocates at MIT, OpenBiome has facilitated more than 5,000 fecal transplants across 350 hospitals in 49 U.S. states and 6 countries.

OpenBiome is collaborating with the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre (APC) Microbiome Institute, a research center based at the University College Cork, to work with clinicians, researchers, and regulators to adapt OpenBiome’s stool banking model to the European context, and import its microbiota preparations beginning in Ireland and the UK.

European physicians who are interested in using OpenBiome’s material to treat C. difficile patients or to conduct research studies should contact info@openbiome.org.

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