Ureaplasma urealyticum

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Ureaplasma urealyticum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Bacteria
Division: Firmicutes
Class: Mollicutes
Order: Mycoplasmatales
Family: Mycoplasmataceae
Genus: Ureaplasma
Species: U. urealyticum
Binomial name
Ureaplasma urealyticum
Shepard et al., 1974

Ureaplasma urealyticum is a bacterium belonging to the family Mycoplasmataceae. Its type strain is T960.

Clinical significance[edit]

U. urealyticum is part of the normal genital flora of both men and women.[1] It is found in about 70% of sexually active humans.[2]

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[3] and meningitis. However, given the relatively low pathogenicity of the organism, its role in some of these diseases remains contentious.

U. urealyticum has been noted as one of the infectious causes of sterile pyuria.[4]


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. [5] 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.[citation needed]


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;[6] streptomycin is an alternative, but is less popular because it must be injected. Penicillins are ineffective — U. urealyticum does not have a cell wall,[7] which is the drug's main target.[8] [9]


  1. ^ "Ureaplasma urealyticum- Clinical significance". Meducation.net. 
  2. ^ "Ureaplasma urealyticum". HealthExpress. 
  3. ^ Kafetzis DA, Skevaki CL, Skouteri V, et al (October 2004). "Maternal genital colonization with Ureaplasma urealyticum promotes preterm delivery: association of the respiratory colonization of premature infants with chronic lung disease and increased mortality". Clin. Infect. Dis. 39 (8): 1113–22. doi:10.1086/424505. PMID 15486833. 
  4. ^ Dieter RS (2000). "Sterile pyuria: a differential diagnosis". Compr Ther 26 (3): 150–2. doi:10.1007/s12019-000-0001-1. PMID 10984817. 
  5. ^ "Ureaplasma urealyticum- Classification". Meducation.net. 
  6. ^ http://www.thesticlinic.com/ureaplasma-urealyticum.aspx
  7. ^ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3128564/
  8. ^ http://www.elmhurst.edu/~chm/vchembook/652penicillin.html
  9. ^ Pignanelli S, Pulcrano G, Iula VD, Zaccherini P, Testa A, Catania MR. In vitro antimicrobial profile of Ureaplasma urealyticum from genital tract of childbearing-aged women in Northern and Southern Italy. APMIS. 2013 Sep 30. doi: 10.1111/apm.12184. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 24106832

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