Transfer of intestinal microbiota from lean donors increases insulin sensitivity in individuals with metabolic syndrome

Gastroenterology. 2012 Oct;143(4):913-6.e7. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2012.06.031. Epub 2012 Jun 20.


Alterations in intestinal microbiota are associated with obesity and insulin resistance. We studied the effects of infusing intestinal microbiota from lean donors to male recipients with metabolic syndrome on the recipients' microbiota composition and glucose metabolism. Subjects were assigned randomly to groups that were given small intestinal infusions of allogenic or autologous microbiota. Six weeks after infusion of microbiota from lean donors, insulin sensitivity of recipients increased (median rate of glucose disappearance changed from 26.2 to 45.3 μmol/kg/min; P < .05) along with levels of butyrate-producing intestinal microbiota. Intestinal microbiota might be developed as therapeutic agents to increase insulin sensitivity in humans;; registered at the Dutch Trial Register (NTR1776).

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcaligenes faecalis
  • Bacteroidetes
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Clostridium
  • Escherichia coli
  • Eubacterium
  • Fatty Acids, Volatile / metabolism
  • Feces / chemistry
  • Feces / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Intestine, Small / microbiology*
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / blood
  • Metabolic Syndrome / therapy*
  • Metagenome*
  • Middle Aged
  • Oxalobacter formigenes
  • Statistics, Nonparametric


  • Blood Glucose
  • Fatty Acids, Volatile