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The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved a new drug from Seres Therapeutics that uses bacteria to treat a bowel disorder, making it the second microbiome therapy to hit the market.

The drug, Vowst, is designed to treat recurrent infections of the Clostridium difficile bacteria, which unleashes toxins that wreak havoc on the digestive system. These infections can occur after a person takes antibiotics, which tend to wipe out both good and bad bacteria in the gut, allowing Clostridium difficile to take over.


Seres Therapeutics’ drug works by introducing good bacteria back into the digestive system. Nearly 90% of patients who took the drug after a C. diff infection were free from recurrence eight weeks later, compared to 60% in the placebo group.

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