New poop depository looking for Dutch feces donors

LUMC Leiden hospital
Entrance to the Leiden University Medical Center. May 5, 2008 (photo: Dfmalan / Wikimedia / CC BY 3.0). (Entrance to the Leiden University Medical Center. May 5, 2008 (photo: Dfmalan / Wikimedia / CC BY 3.0))

The Netherlands now has its own "poop bank". The Netherlands Donor Feces Bank (NDFB) opened at the Leiden University Medical Center and is looking for donors, the university announced in a press release on Friday.

The NDFB offers a solution to people suffering from recurrent intestinal infections, such as Clostrdium difficile, by transplanting feces from a donor with healthy intestinal flora, according to the university.

The Clostridium difficile intestinal infection is relatively common and affects about 3 thousand people in the Netherlands a year, usually after treatment with antibiotics. Sometimes the infection is relatively harmless with only a few symptoms, other times it is more problematic. In about 5 percent of the cases the infection is recurring. For this 5 percent, feces transplantations are the only option.

Currently about three or four feces transplants are done in the Netherlands every month. But now that the NDFB is open, the expectation is that this number will increase rapidly. "The effectiveness of feces transplants in people with a Clostrdium difficile infection was proven in 2013", said professor Ed Kuijper, LUMC professor of the Department of Medical Microbiology. "Since then the treatment has been included in national and international guidelines."

The NDFB is looking for people willing to donate their poop. Donors must live in the vicinity of Leiden and must be healthy. Donors will be extensively screened for transmittable diseases by questionnaire, a blood test and a fecal examination. Those willing to become feces donors can contact the NDFB on

"Feces donation is not established yet, like giving blood is. I think it's a matter of getting used to", Kuijper said. "Donors offer patients the chance of an accessible and safe treatment against a burdensome disease."

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