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Ulcerative colitis: bacteria findings raise hopes for new treatment.

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So cool....

inflammatory bowel diseases could be treated by introducing these “missing” acids into the colon.

Dr Aida Habtezion, a co-author of the study from Stanford University, told the Guardian the findings suggest a new approach to treating ulcerative colitis could be developed, based on introducing microbes or the substances they produce. 

Many patients find current treatments do not work or have side-effects. “I think it brings another mechanism, a natural way, in which we can reconstitute and hopefully treat our patients,” Habtezion said.

Writing in the journal Cell Host & Microbe, the team report how they studied two groups of patients who had had their colons removed and pouches created. For one group, of 17 patients, this surgery was to treat ulcerative colitis whereas for the other group, of seven patients, it was because of a different condition that does not involve inflammation.

Certain bacteria in the gut are known to convert bile acids, produced by the liver, into other substances, called secondary bile acids – these substances have recently been suggested to have an anti-inflammatory role.

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