The microbiome and host mucosal interactions in urinary tract diseases

Bernadette Jones-Freeman, Michelle Chonwerawong, Vanessa R. Marcelino, Aniruddh V. Deshpande, Samuel C. Forster, Malcolm R. Starkey

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


The urinary tract consists of the bladder, ureters, and kidneys, and is an essential organ system for filtration and excretion of waste products and maintaining systemic homeostasis. In this capacity, the urinary tract is impacted by its interactions with other mucosal sites, including the genitourinary and gastrointestinal systems. Each of these sites harbors diverse ecosystems of microbes termed the microbiota, that regulates complex interactions with the local and systemic immune system. It remains unclear whether changes in the microbiota and associated metabolites may be a consequence or a driver of urinary tract diseases. Here, we review the current literature, investigating the impact of the microbiota on the urinary tract in homeostasis and disease including urinary stones, acute kidney injury, chronic kidney disease, and urinary tract infection. We propose new avenues for exploration of the urinary microbiome using emerging technology and discuss the potential of microbiome-based medicine for urinary tract conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)779-792
Number of pages14
JournalMucosal Immunology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

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