Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study debunks common myth that urine is sterile

Date:
April 9, 2012
Source:
Loyola University Health System
Summary:
Researchers have determined that bacteria are present in the bladders of some healthy women, which discredits the common belief that normal urine is sterile.

Researchers have determined that bacteria are present in the bladders of some healthy women, which discredits the common belief that normal urine is sterile. These findings were published in the April issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology by researchers at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (SSOM).

"Doctors have been trained to believe that urine is germ-free," said Linda Brubaker, MD, MS, dean, SSOM. "However, these findings challenge this notion, so this research may have positive implications for how we treat patients with urinary tract conditions in the future."

This study evaluated urine specimens of women who had symptoms consistent with a urinary tract infection (UTI), but were free of known UTIs. Urine samples were collected from standard urination, through a catheter, or from a thin needle inserted into the abdomen while the women were under anesthesia for gynecologic surgery. The urine was analyzed using advanced DNA-based detection methods. These tests determined that the adult female bladder can contain certain forms of bacteria that are not identified by urine culture techniques that are typically used to diagnose UTIs.

"While urine cultures have been the gold standard to identify UTIs in the past, they have limited utility," said Alan Wolfe, PhD, co-author and professor of Microbiology and Immunology, SSOM. "They are not as effective as the DNA-based detection measures used in this study."

This study also looked at collection methods to test urine for bacteria. The results revealed that the standard method to catch urine in a cup poses problems, because bacteria from the vagina often contaminate these specimens. In contrast, urine collection using a catheter or a needle was effective and comparable between tests.

Loyola researchers now plan to determine which bacteria in the bladder are helpful and which are harmful. They also will look at how these bacteria interact with each other and with their host, and how we can use this information to help patients. This research is in line with a larger international effort that is underway to identify the core bacterial composition of a healthy human body. Researchers strive to correlate changes in the composition of bacterial communities in and on the body with certain diseases.

"Further studies are needed to determine if the bacteria found in the bladders of women in this study are relevant to urinary tract conditions," Dr. Brubaker said. "If that is the case, these studies could make it possible to identify women who are at-risk for these conditions, which may change how we manage patients."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Loyola University Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. A. J. Wolfe, E. Toh, N. Shibata, R. Rong, K. Kenton, M. FitzGerald, E. R. Mueller, P. Schreckenberger, Q. Dong, D. E. Nelson, L. Brubaker. Evidence of Uncultivated Bacteria in the Adult Female Bladder. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 2012; 50 (4): 1376 DOI: 10.1128/JCM.05852-11

Cite This Page:

Loyola University Health System. "Study debunks common myth that urine is sterile." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409164156.htm>.
Loyola University Health System. (2012, April 9). Study debunks common myth that urine is sterile. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409164156.htm
Loyola University Health System. "Study debunks common myth that urine is sterile." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409164156.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 28, 2014) The World Health Organisation has called for the regulation of electronic cigarettes as both tobacco and medical products. Ciara Lee looks at the impact of the move on the tobacco industry. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) CDC director Tom Frieden says the Ebola outbreak is even worse than he feared. But he also said there's still hope to contain it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How A 'Rule Of Thumb' Could Slow Down Drinking

How A 'Rule Of Thumb' Could Slow Down Drinking

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) A study suggests people who follow a "rule of thumb" when pouring wine dispense less than those who don't have a particular amount in mind. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins