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Didn’t someone post a study before showing a gradual decline over something like 3-months? I can’t find anything useful on PubMed. 18-days seems a bit early to stop though. I don’t believe it’s impossible. There’s ongoing research about colonisation, like gene clusters involved in creating pili, which allow bacteria to latch onto the gut wall.
I don’t think probiotics can act as a replacement though, which is why people shouldn’t stress out about colonisation as long as they keep taking them. Lactobacillus and bifidobacterium aren’t even in the top 80 species in the gut. Surely their benefit is in what they can do to change gut ecology, rather than whether they’ll be with you for the rest of your life. Dr. Ayes made a good post on restoration: Dr Oz on Gut Flora.