Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BackgroundIncreasing demand for fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) has created a need for stool banks sourced from long-term healthy donors. Here, we describe our experience in recruiting and screening fecal donors.MethodsMailbox, newspaper, and online advertisements were used. Potential donors were required to satisfy a prescreen telephone conversation, pass blood and stool investigations, then undertake a screening interview including medical history, physical examination, and evaluation of donor selection criteria.ResultsOne hundred sixteen potential donors were prescreened of whom 74 failed-47 declined based on study donation requirements (primarily related to frequency and duration of donations), 13 had medical comorbidities, 6 variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease risk factors, 8 for other reasons. Thirty-eight completed stool and blood testing-1 failed blood testing (indeterminate hepatitis C serology), whereas 15 failed stool investigations (5 Dientamoeba fragilis, 5 Blastocystis hominis, 1 B. hominis and D. fragilis, 1 Giardia intestinalis plus D. fragilis, 1 Norovirus plus Clostridium difficile toxin positive, and 2 leucocytes or erythrocytes on stool microscopy). Of the 18 potential donors proceeding to screening interview, 6 were excluded (3 body mass index >30, 1 illicit drug use, 1 uncontrolled anxiety and concerns regarding compliance, 1 irregular bowel movements after new medication commencement). In total, only 12 of 116 (10%) potential donors were enrolled as study donors.ConclusionsRecruitment of fecal donors for FMT is challenging with only a small percentage ultimately serving as donors. Many were unable or unwilling to meet the donor commitment requirements. A surprisingly large proportion of healthy asymptomatic donors failed stool testing, primarily due to gastrointestinal parasites.

Original publication




Journal article


Inflammatory bowel diseases

Publication Date





1600 - 1606


*Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney, Australia; †Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Bankstown Lidcombe Hospital, Sydney, Australia; ‡Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Nambour General Hospital, Nambour, Australia; §School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia; ‖Centre for Digestive Diseases, Sydney, Australia; ¶Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Liverpool Hospital, Sydney, Australia; **Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, St Vincent's Hospital Melbourne and University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia; and ††Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom.


Humans, Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, Treatment Outcome, Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Middle Aged, Female, Male, Young Adult, Microbiota, Fecal Microbiota Transplantation