Urine Stasis Predisposes to Urinary Tract Infection by an Opportunistic Uropathogen in the Megabladder (Mgb) Mouse

Brian Becknell, Ahmad Z. Mohamed, Birong Li, Michael E. Wilhide, Susan E. Ingraham
Plos One2015
PURPOSE: Urinary stasis is a risk factor for recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI). Homozygous mutant Megabladder (Mgb-/-) mice exhibit incomplete bladder emptying as a consequence of congenital detrusor aplasia. We hypothesize that this predisposes Mgb-/- mice to spontaneous and experimental UTI. METHODS: Mgb-/-, Mgb+/-, and wild-type female mice underwent serial ultrasound and urine cultures at 4, 6, and 8 weeks to detect spontaneous UTI. Urine bacterial isolates were analyzed by Gram stain and speciated. Bladder stones were analyzed by x-ray diffractometry. Bladders and kidneys were subject to histologic analysis. The pathogenicity of coagulase-negative Staphylococcus (CONS) isolated from Mgb-/- urine was tested by transurethral administration to culture-negative Mgb-/- or wild-type animals. The contribution of urinary stasis to CONS susceptibility was evaluated by cutaneous vesicostomy in Mgb-/- mice. RESULTS: Mgb-/- mice develop spontaneous bacteriuria (42%) and struvite bladder stones (31%) by 8 weeks, findings absent in Mgb+/- and wild-type controls. CONS was cultured as a solitary isolate from Mgb-/- bladder stones. Bladders and kidneys from mice with struvite stones exhibit mucosal injury, inflammation, and fibrosis. These pathologic features of cystitis and pyelonephritis are replicated by transurethral inoculation of CONS in culture-negative Mgb-/- females, whereas wild-type animals are less susceptible to CONS colonization and organ injury. Cutaneous vesicostomy prior to CONS inoculation significantly reduces the quantity of CONS recovered from Mgb-/- urine, bladders, and kidneys. CONCLUSIONS: CONS is an opportunistic uropathogen in the setting of urinary stasis, leading to enhanced UTI incidence and severity in Mgb-/- mice.
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