A Healthy FMT Donor Microbiome and response to FMT

The reader whose uBiome I reviewed  here in September, did a followup with his FMT donor and got permissions from the healthy donor to share. This is of great interest because FMT for CFS tend to work well for a while and then the patient relapse. Understanding the factors involve with FMT is an important quest.

Reader Notes

I did a series of 5 FMTs for my CFS, back in August. And I was lucky in my donor. I found a longtime friend locally, more than willing to help, and in extremely good health. Breast-fed as an infant, clean diet, no antibiotics in past 6 months, passed all the basic pathology screenings.
And when I say “extremely good health,” I mean: an athlete who does CrossFit, low anxiety, whom I’ve never seen tired or irritable. If I asked 10 of our mutual friends who is the healthiest man they personally know, they would all mention his name.
But my FMT was only mildly helpful. It immediately corrected my previous 2 months of severe fatigue (following a difficult outpatient surgery after which I declined antibiotics). But there were no other significant changes. It just brought me back to me pre-surgery baseline, which has been decades of CFS (brain fog, low energy, exercise intolerance, general hypersensitivity, etc).
With that in mind, I got his permission to let you take a look at his uBiome results we just got back.
The analysis of the reader who had the FMT is here.

Standard Items:

  • Lactobacillus: 0x
  • Bifidobacterium: 4.07x
  • Akkermansia:  0x
  • Diversity:  59%ile
  • Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes:  1.8:1 (Normal 2.1:1)

Uncommon Bacteria

Bacteria name Rank % of Samples
Leptotrichia Genus 1.5%
Anaerobacter Genus 3.0%
Parasporobacterium Genus 3.5%
Neisseria Genus 4.2%
Aggregatibacter Genus 4.7%

High Bacteria

It is interesting to note that every high genus (apart from Bifidobacterium) is on the list of typical overgrowths seen with CFS (see this post)

Odoribacter: 2.55 X
Bifidobacterium:  2.55 X
Faecalibacterium:  1.91 X
Slackia: 1.88 X
Streptococcus:  1.75 X
Subdoligranulum: 1.73 X
Adlercreutzia: 1.65 X
Clostridium:  1.59 X

Bottom Line

In my earlier post, Theortical Protocol for Fecal Transplants for CFS/IBS etc, I suggested “donor should not have any bacteria genus > 1.5x that the recipient has > 1.5x.”  This donor match this criteria, so well it may be helpful (as it was in this case), I would like to suggest raising the threshold to: “No bacteria genus > 1.5x should be on the list of common bacteria genus overgrowths listed at Overview of this Blog and the Microbiome.

How can the donor be healthy with no Lactobacillus?

There are several possible answers:

  • He may be taking adequate supplements to compensate.
  • His DNA (remember DNA SNPs are associated with CFS/IBS/FM and symptoms).
  • Other bacteria may be compensating
  • He may be borderline CFS
  • The high Bifidobacterium compensated.

This is an education post to facilitate discussing this approach with your medical professionals. It is not medical advice for the treatment of any condition. Always consult with your medical professional before doing any  changes of diet, supplements or activity. Some items cites may interfere with prescription medicines.