Microbiology & Immunology Publications
Identification and plasmid profiles of Lactobacillus species from the vagina of 100 healthy women
European Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
URL with Digital Object Identifier
Objectives: A study was conducted to use new molecular technologies to identify the vaginal bacterial species of postmenopausal women under oral estrogen therapy (Premarin-conjugated equine estrogen, CEE). Study design: Nineteen postmenopausal women under CEE treatment were recruited and their vaginal flora were analyzed during 3 months, using polymerase chain reaction in combination with denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and sequencing of DNA fragments. Results: Sixty-eight percent of the women presented with a 'Normal' Nugent score at the first sampling time (d0). All the subjects had bacterial species detected in their vaginal flora. Lactobacillus species were detected in all samples. Moreover, 53% of the women had lactobacilli exclusively at d0. Two Lactobacillus species were dominant, and were recovered from the majority of samples (L. iners and L. crispatus). Forty-four percent of the samples also contained other bacterial species, which were potential urogenital pathogens. Candida albicans was detected in 26% of the subjects. The vaginal flora of the women under CEE treatment were different from that of postmenopausal women not receiving hormone therapy, but very similar to premenopausal women. Conclusions: The present study indicates that one benefit from hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is the restoration of a lactobacilli vaginal flora associated with a protective effect against urogenital infections. © 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.