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Effects of Atibiotics

Antibiotics are a standard treatment regimen for people with bacterial infections. However, antibiotics can wipe out a person’s gut microbial flora which are, for the most part, helpful by producing certain vitamins such as vitamin K. An additional problem is that this can lead to a recurrent infection of the opportunistic and antibiotic-resistant bacterium Clostridium difficile, which kills over 14,000 patients a year in the United States. Fortunately, a procedure called fecal transplantation has been on the rise to combat both gastrointestinal and non-gastrointestinal diseases. Read the article The Promise of Poop to learn more about fecal transplants and to answer the following questions. (1) Briefly describe the fecal transplant procedure. (2) What were the results of the randomized clinical trial comparing fecal transplants with vancomycin for patients with C. difficile infection? What was the (overwhelmingly) best treatment? (3) Ultimately, scientists hope to replace fecal transplants with something better. What are the two possible alternatives to fecal transplants mentioned in the article? (4) Of the two alternatives stated in the previous question, which one is considered to be more beneficial? Provide two reasons why.

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