The role of enterobacterial flora in the onset and progression of inflammatory bowel diseases is a topic of considerable interest. Here, we assessed the association among enterobacterial flora, dietary factors, and ulcerative colitis (UC) progression. Forty-six patients with UC who were diagnosed as being in remission were enrolled. We collected each patient's stool sample one or two days before diagnostic colonoscopy. After colonoscopy, we observed the patients for one year and then retrospectively divided them into two groups: remission (n = 39) and relapse (n = 7) groups, depending on whether the relapse occurred during the follow-up period, and analyzed the relationship among patient characteristics, dietary factors, enterobacterial flora, and UC relapse. Overall, there were no significant differences in bacterial community populations between the remission and relapse groups, except that the order Lactobacillales was detected at a significantly higher rate in the relapse than in the remission group (100% vs 71.4%, p<0.05). Vitamin C intake was significantly higher in the remission than in the relapse group (p<0.05). Although there were no obvious differences in enterobacterial flora between the remission and relapse groups, there was a relationship among enterobacterial flora, diet, and UC progression. Given that the enterobacterial flora was only analyzed at the initiation of the study, we conclude that in future analyses, enterobacterial flora should be sampled at numerous time points to examine its role in UC progression. Further long-term longitudinal studies examining enterobacterial flora, dietary factors, and UC progression are also required.
Keywords: dietary factor; enterobacterial flora; ulcerative colitis.
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