The mycobiome of the human urinary tract: potential roles for fungi in urology

Ann Transl Med. 2017 Jan;5(2):31. doi: 10.21037/atm.2016.12.69.


The mycobiome, defined as the fungal microbiota within a host environment, is an important but understudied component of the human microbial ecosystem. New culture-independent approaches to determine microbial diversity, such as next-generation sequencing methods, have discovered specific, characteristic, commensal fungal populations present in different body sites. These studies have also identified diverse patterns in fungal communities associated with various diseases. While alterations in urinary bacterial communities have been noted in disease states, a comprehensive description of the urinary mycobiome has been lacking. Early evidence suggests the urinary mycobiome is a diverse community with high intraindividual variability. In other disease systems, the mycobiome is thought to interact with other biomes and the host to play a role in organ homeostasis and pathology; further study will be needed to elucidate the role fungi play in bladder health and disease.

Keywords: Mycobiome; fungal microbiome; fungi; lower urinary tract symptom (LUTS); urinary tract; urology.

Publication types

  • Review