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Chapter: Microbiology and Immunology: Bacteriology: Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma

Genital Mycoplasma Species

M. hominis and Mycoplasma genitalis are the genital Mycoplasma species, which inhabit the mucosa of the urogenital tract.

Genital Mycoplasma Species

M. hominis and Mycoplasma genitalis are the genital Mycoplasma species, which inhabit the mucosa of the urogenital tract.

Mycoplasma hominis

M. hominis is a facultative anaerobe and is relatively a fast-grow-ing Mycoplasma, which grows within 1–4 days. The bacteria meta-bolize arginine but do not utilize glucose. M. hominis typically produces large fried-egg appearance colonies on Mycoplasma medium. Inhibition of the growth of the bacteria with specific antisera to M. hominis is used to differentiate it from other geni-tal mycoplasmas. The clinical manifestations by genital myco-plasmas vary depending on the type of infection:

·           M. hominis is associated with infection of genitourinary tractand reproductive disease. M. hominis causes genital infection, which may result in diverse manifestation, such as salpingi-tis, pelvic abscess, puerperal infection, septic abortion.

·           It also causes nongenital infections, such as septic arthritis, peritonitis, septic thrombophlebitis, and brain abscess.

·           It may also cause primary atypical pneumonia and meningi-tis in newborns.

 The incidence of colonization by genital mycoplasmas increases after puberty and is related to the sexual activity. M. hominis col-onizes in approximately 15% of sexually active men and women, while Ureaplasma colonizes 45–70% of sexually active women.

        M. hominis organisms unlike other mycoplasmas are resistant toerythromycin and occasionally to tetracyclines. Clindamycin is use-ful to treat infections caused by such resistant strains of M. hominis.

Mycoplasma genitalis

M. genitalis has also been implicated as a cause of nongonococ-cal urethritis and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). M. genitalis is primarily a pathogen of the gastrointestinal tract, which can cause occasional infection in the genitourinary and respiratory tract. It is a very difficult organism to be isolated by culture. Their isolation may require more than 2–4 months of incubation.

    These genital Mycoplasma species have been isolated more fre-quently from African American than from white men and women. Colonization of infants by Mycoplasma species usually occurs dur-ing passage of the baby through the birth canal. Colonization with these genital mycoplasmas occurs only up to 2 years.

        Since genital mycoplasmas have been transmitted sexually, avoidance of sexual activity or the use of proper safety proce-dures prevents the disease caused by these genital mycoplasmas.

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Microbiology and Immunology: Bacteriology: Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma : Genital Mycoplasma Species |

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