Avoiding Painful Side Effect of Diabetes

Study examines why some with disease face greater risk of urinary tract infections

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TUESDAY, May 25, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- A Midwestern University study may help explain why people with type 2 diabetes and women with gestational diabetes are more likely to develop urinary tract infections (UTIs) than people with type 1 diabetes.

The researchers focused on the effects of insulin on Escherichia coli bacteria, which commonly cause UTIs. They found that concentrations of insulin and glucose similar to levels found in the urine of people with type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes increase the ability of E. coli to adhere in the bladder.

The researchers also found insulin affects the cell surface of E. coli in ways that may help protect the bacteria against antibiotics.

"Based on our observations, it appears that insulin with glucose affects the growth and some of the surface characteristics of E. coli that correlate with its ability to cause urinary tract infections," researcher Karolina Klosowka said in a prepared statement.

"These findings bring a new perspective in helping to understand why patients with type 2 diabetes and females with gestational diabetes have a higher incidence of urinary tract infections," Klosowka said.

The study was presented May 25 at the American Society for Microbiology general meeting in New Orleans.

More information

The American Urological Association has more about urinary tract infections.

SOURCE: American Society for Microbiology, news release, May 25, 2004

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