Clostridium Difficile, or C Diff as it is known, is an unpleasant infection that can be rather unpleasant. The best treatment doctors have available is unpleasant too: They recommend that sufferers have a fecal transplant. Yes, that is actually what it sounds like. If you tell a doctor you have C Diff then you will be told to eat shit.
But sniggering aside, it is a serious matter, and made all the more complex by the fact that doctors don't have readily available samples of dung that has been rigorously tested. This means that if someone needs a transplant, then their doctors must find the samples, test the donors themselves for any infectious diseases, as well as make them take part in a physical examination and questionnaire. Which is both expensive and a lot of hassle. So what to do?
According to STV two students from Aberdeen have come up with a clever solution: Just as we have blood banks and sperm banks, we need poo banks. No, they're not taking the piss - it's the poo that they are interested in.
Fourth year medical students James McIlroy and Matthew Bracchi have founded EuroBiotix, which is going to be a social enterprise aimed at filling this niche.
Mr Mcllroy is quoted by STV as saying that "We appreciate it’s not the most pleasant of topics but C diff is a serious problem for sufferers and the NHS and we believe our idea is a serious potential solution, with recent trials showing this to be a very effective treatment method."
So don't be surprised if we soon start seeing heart-felt celebrity led appeals for your poo some time soon. [STV]