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Older patients benefit more from sequential courses of washed microbiota transplantation than younger population with ulcerative colitis.

OBJECTIVES: The short-term efficacy of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) for ulcerative colitis (UC) has increasingly been evaluated. However, few studies have examined the long-term efficacy and its predictors. This study aimed to assess the clinical factors affecting the long-term efficacy of FMT for patients with UC.

METHODS: This is a retrospective analysis of a prospective trial (NCT01790061) for patients with UC undergoing washed microbiota transplantation (WMT), which is the improved methodology of FMT. The long-term clinical efficacy of WMT and the factors affecting efficacy were analyzed.

RESULTS: A total of 259 patients were included for analysis. Of 70.7% (183/259) of patients achieved a clinical response at 1 month after WMT and 29.7% (77/259) achieved steroid-free clinical remission 6 months after WMT. Total 44 patients maintained a clinical response for ≥24 months, and 33 (17.1%, 33/193) achieved steroid-free clinical remission for ≥24 months with WMT monotherapy. Patients with age at UC onset of ≥60 years, mild disease severity and undergoing ≥2 courses of WMT during the response within 6 months were more likely to achieve steroid-free clinical remission 6 months after WMT. Besides, independent factors associated with the long-term response of WMT for UC were age at onset of ≥60 years and ≥2 courses of WMT during the response.

CONCLUSIONS: This study indicated WMT could induce short-term steroid-free clinical remission and maintain long-term response in UC, especially for older patients and patients undergoing sequential courses.

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