SUFU 2021: Natural History of the Urinary Microbiome in Women Across the Menopausal Transition

( The roles of microbes in urinary homeostasis are not well understood, but alterations have associated with various urologic conditions. Understanding compositions of healthy urinary microbial communities with aging and hormonal status changes is important.

This study aimed to characterize how the female urinary microbiome evolves with age and looked at relationships between microbial community diversity and menopausal status among asymptomatic women. Catheterized urinary samples were obtained from 63 asymptomatic women (age 22 to 92). Next-generation sequencing (NGS) characterized urinary microbial populations and Simpson’s and Shannon’s diversity indices were calculated for each sample to measure population richness and evenness. The bacterial diversity, including both richness and evenness, was lower in younger women and increased with age. The bacterial communities in younger women are more homogenous, being predominantly lactobacilli. As women approached peri-menopausal transition, the composition of the urinary microbiome transitioned to more divergent and varied communities. The younger women harbored more homogenous, lactobacillus-predominant bacterial populations. But the older women have a significant decline in frequency and abundance of lactobacilli.

Presented by: Oluwarotimi Nettey, Ashley Caron, Muhammud Khalique, James Ackerman, Karyn Eilber, Jennifer Anger, A. Lenore Ackerman, Division of Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Urology, UCLA, Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Written by: Diane K. Newman, DNP, CRNP, FAAN, BCB-PMD, Nurse Practioner and Co-Director, Penn Center for Continence and Pelvic Health Adjunct Professor of Urology in Surgery during the 2021 Society of Urodynamics, Female Pelvic Medicine & Urogenital Reconstruction (SUFU) Winter Meeting.