This week on BBS: Microbiota is altered by Hepatitis B liver damage, urine contains bacteria and BBS wishes you the best this holiday season!
Microbiota Changes during Hepatitis B
Infection with Hepatitis B involves the liver and leads to liver damage and eventual cirrhosis; the replacement of normal liver tissue with fibrous scar tissue. Scientists from China investigated if Hepatitis B patients also had changes in their fecal microbiota. They found that the severity of cirrhosis was correlated with increased Entrobacteriaceae and Veillonella and reduced levels of Bacteroidetes. Additionally, there were significant changes in the nutrient consumption of the intestinal bacteria. This may suggest that the microbiota may be compensating for changes in metabolism caused by loss of liver function during Hepatitis B infection.
Urine Isn’t Sterile
It is a common assumption that urine is sterile. However, a recent study shows that this isn’t the case, at least in women. In the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, a team of American researchers used a modified culture protocol combined with modern sequencing techniques to determine the bacteria in urine. The majority of the samples (80%) contained bacteria. The most prevalent genera were Lactobacillus, Corynebacterium and Streptococcus.
- Wei X, Yan X, Zou D, Yang Z, Wang X, Liu W et al. Abnormal fecal microbiota community and functions in patients with hepatitis B liver cirrhosis as revealed by a metagenomic approach. BMC Gastroenterol 2013; 13(1): 175.
- Hilt E, McKinley K, Pearce MM, Rosenfeld AB, Zilliox MJ, Mueller ER et al. Urine is not sterile: use of enhanced urine culture techniques to detect resident bacterial flora in the adult female bladder. J Clin Microbiol 2013.