The urinary tract likely plays a role in the development of various urinary diseases due to the recently recognized notion that urine is not sterile. In this mini review, we summarize the current literature regarding the urinary microbiome and mycobiome and its relationship to various urinary diseases. It has been recently discovered that the healthy urinary tract contains a host of microorganisms, creating a urinary microbiome. The relative abundance and type of bacteria varies, but generally, deviations in the standard microbiome are observed in individuals with urologic diseases, such as bladder cancer, benign prostatic hyperplasia, urgency urinary incontinence, overactive bladder syndrome, interstitial cystitis, bladder pain syndrome, and urinary tract infections. However, whether this change is causative, or correlative has yet to be determined. In summary, the urinary tract hosts a complex microbiome. Changes in this microbiome may be indicative of urologic diseases and can be tracked to predict, prevent, and treat them in individuals. However, current analytical and sampling collection methods may present limitations to the development in the understanding of the urinary microbiome and its relationship with various urinary diseases. Further research on the differences between healthy and diseased microbiomes, the long-term effects of antibiotic treatments on the urobiome, and the effect of the urinary mycobiome on general health will be important in developing a comprehensive understanding of the urinary microbiome and its relationship to the human body.
Investigative and clinical urology. 2021 Nov [Epub]
Rachel Shoemaker, Jayoung Kim
Department of Surgery, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA.