Bacteria Discovery Provides New Insights Into Treatment of UTIs

Australian researchers have used genome-sequencing technology to find a collection of bacteria that exists in the female bladder even in the absence of infection, dubbing it the ‘bladder microbiome’. The research led by Dr. Samuel Forster suggests that UTIs, which are caused by bacteria entering the urethra, may be affected by the balance of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria in the bladder. As it’s standard to treat UTIs with antibiotics, this research raises questions about how whilst antibiotics is used to kill the ‘bad’ bacteria in patients with UTIs, perhaps it could simultaneously be upsetting the balance of healthy bacteria that have a protective effect. Dr. Catherine Burke, Lecturer at the School of Life Sciences at the University of Technology Sydney, joined us to discuss this.

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