The goal of this systematic review was to examine the current literature on the urinary microbiome and its associations with noninfectious, nonmalignant, urologic diseases. Secondarily, we aimed to describe the most common bioinformatics used to analyze the urinary microbiome.
A comprehensive literature search of Ovid MEDLINE using the keywords “microbiota” AND “prostatic hyperplasia,” “microbiota” AND “urinary bladder, overactive,” “microbiota” AND “pelvic pain,” and “microbiota” AND “urolithiasis” OR “nephrolithiasis” OR “urinary calculi” AND “calcium oxalate” was performed to identify relevant clinical microbiome studies associated with noninfectious benign urological conditions published from 2010 to 2022. We included human studies that evaluated the urinary, stone, or semen microbiota, or any combination of the above-mentioned locations.
A total of 25 human studies met the inclusion criteria: 4 on benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), 9 on overactive bladder (OAB), 8 on calcium oxalate stones, and 4 on chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS). Specific taxonomic profiles in the urine microbiome were associated with each pathology, and evaluation of alpha- and beta-diversity and relative abundance was accounted for most of the studies. Symptom prevalence and severity were also analyzed and showed associations with specific microbes.
The study of the urogenital microbiome is rapidly expanding in urology. Noninfectious benign urogenital diseases, such as BPH, calcium oxalate stones, CPPS, and OAB were found to be associated with specific microbial taxonomies. Further research with larger study populations is necessary to solidify the knowledge of the urine microbiome in these conditions and to facilitate the creation of microbiome-based diagnostic and therapeutic approaches.