“Smith, who has a PhD in microbiology, has devoted much of his adult life to treating and curing C. diff, partly by founding two companies—OpenBiome and Finch Laboratories. The former is basically a non-profit “stool bank” that collects life-giving samples from donors, and the latter is a research and development company working on making the treatment available to all who need it—including in pill form.”
When Smith launched OpenBiome, the entire landscape of CDI treatment changed. Now that he is at Finch Therapeutics, Smith is ready to change the treatment landscapes of many more diseases. “If we could manage this ecosystem and intentionally modulate the composition of this community,” he declares, “we could radically impact the drivers of morbidity and mortality.”
‘Meanwhile, the success of the study in Arizona has prompted America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to look into the matter. A firm called Finch Therapeutics Group, based in Massachusetts, hopes to commercialise the use of MTT as a treatment for autism and the FDA has now granted this effort “fast track” status, which should speed up the review process.’
“Over the past decade, tens of thousands of Americans with C. diff have been cured through fecal transplants, often with a single dose that can bring patients back from the brink of death. The treatment has more than an 80 percent success rate, according to several studies, and many patients feel better within hours of receiving the procedure, which is usually administered through colonoscopy or capsules containing desiccated fecal matter.”
CEO Mark Smith describes the vast potential of the microbiome and Finch’s therapeutic platforms:
“We think the microbiome is really fundamental to many aspects of who we are, how our immune systems function, how we regulate our metabolism and how we think and feel,’ says Smith, who predicts ‘broad potential across a number of therapeutic areas.”
Finch Therapeutics Inc. is developing an oral alternative to fecal microbial transplant that it believes entails less biology risk than more advanced oral candidates, with more targeted delivery than full microbiome transplants delivered via enema.