Ureaplasma urealyticum is a species in the genus Ureaplasm noted for its lack of a cell wall. It is found in about 70% of sexually active humans. It is present as a pathogen in cases of pelvic inflammatory disease and is transmitted through sexual activity or from mother to infant during birth.
It had also been associated with a number of diseases in humans, including nonspecific urethritis, infertility, chorioamnionitis, stillbirth, premature birth, and, in the perinatal period, pneumonia, bronchopulmonary dysplasia and meningitis. U. urealyticum has been noted as one of the infectious causes of sterile pyuria.
If infection with this bacterium goes undetected, untreated or recurs, it reduces the fertility of both men and women, causes internal scarring, and has been implicated as the cause in preterm births, stillbirths, sepsis in newborns.
The six recognised Ureaplasma species have a GC content of 27–30%, and a genome size ranging from 0.76 to 1.17 Mbase pairs, and cholesterol is required for growth. A defining characteristic of the genus is that they perform urea hydrolysis. Some strains originally classified as U. urealyticum should be treated as a new species, U. parvum.
Doxycycline is the drug of choice, but azithromycin is also used as a five-day course rather than a single dose that would be used to treat Chlamydia infection; streptomycin is an alternative, but is less popular because it must be injected. Penicillins are ineffective — U. urealyticum does not have a cell wall, which is the drug's main target.
- International Organization for Mycoplasmology (IOM)
- Sexually transmitted disease
- Vaginal infection
- Vaginal disease
- Vaginal health
- List of bacterial vaginosis microbiota
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