Implications of the Genitourinary Microbiota in Prostatic Disease

  • Petar BajicEmail author
  • Ryan A. Dornbier
  • Chirag P. Doshi
  • Alan J. Wolfe
  • Ahmer V. Farooq
  • Larissa Bresler
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (K McVary, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia


Purpose of Review

To summarize recent investigation into associations between the genitourinary microbiota and prostatic disease.

Recent Findings

The genitourinary tract is not sterile. There are microbial communities (microbiota) in each niche of the genitourinary tract including the bladder, prostate, and urethra, which have been the subject of increasing scientific interest. Investigators have utilized several unique methods to study them, resulting in a highly heterogeneous body of literature. To characterize these genitourinary microbiota, diverse clinical specimens have been analyzed, including urine obtained by various techniques, seminal fluid, expressed prostatic secretions, and prostatic tissue. Recent studies have attempted to associate the microbiota detected from these samples with urologic disease and have implicated the genitourinary microbiota in many common conditions, including benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), prostate cancer, and chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS).


In this review, we summarize the recent literature pertaining to the genitourinary microbiota and its relationship to the pathophysiology and management of three common prostatic conditions: BPH, prostate cancer, and CP/CPPS.


Microbiota Microbiome Prostate BPH Prostate cancer Chronic prostatitis 



We would like to thank the members of the Loyola Urinary Education and Research Collaborative (LUEREC) for their contributions to the work described.


AJW has been supported by National Institutes of Health grants R01 DK104718, 2 U10 HD41250, U01 DK58229, R21 DK097435, R56 DK104718, and P20 DK108268, a translational grant from the Falk Foundation, and by RFC LU206998 from Loyola University Chicago. AJW also has received funding for an Investigator Initiated Study VESI-12D01 from Astellas Scientific and Medical Affairs, Inc. AVF and LB have been supported by Loyola University Chicago RFC LU207906. LB has also been supported by the Interstitial Cystitis Association.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Petar Bajic and Chirag P. Doshi each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

Ryan A. Dornbier, Ahmer V. Farooq, and Larissa Bresler report intramural funding from Loyola University Medical Center Research Committee.

Alan J. Wolfe reports grants from Astellas Scientific and Medical Affairs and Kimberly Clark Corporation.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


The funding sources have had no role in design or conduct of the studies; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; or in preparation, review, or approval of this or any other manuscript.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Petar Bajic
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ryan A. Dornbier
    • 1
  • Chirag P. Doshi
    • 1
  • Alan J. Wolfe
    • 2
  • Ahmer V. Farooq
    • 1
  • Larissa Bresler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of UrologyLoyola University Chicago Stritch School of MedicineMaywoodUSA
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyLoyola University Chicago Stritch School of MedicineMaywoodUSA

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