Recent evidence has indicated that bacteria-derived extracellular vesicles (EVs) are important for host-microbe communication. The aims of the present study were to evaluate whether bacteria-derived EVs are excreted via the urinary tract and to compare the composition of bacteria-derived EVs in the urine of pregnant and non-pregnant women. Seventy-three non-pregnant and seventy-four pregnant women were enrolled from Dankook University and Ewha Womans University hospitals. DNA was extracted from urine EVs after EV isolation using the differential centrifugation method. 16S ribosomal RNA (16S rRNA) gene sequencing was performed using high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing after amplification of the V1-V3 region of the 16S rDNA. The composition of 13 taxa differed significantly between the pregnant and non-pregnant women. At the genus level, Bacillus spp. EVs were more significantly enriched in the urine of the pregnant women than in that of the non-pregnant women (45.61% vs 0.12%, respectively). However, Pseudomonas spp. EVs were more dominant in non-pregnant women than in pregnant women (13.2% vs 4.09%, respectively). Regarding the compositional difference between pregnant women with normal and preterm delivery, EVs derived from Ureaplasma spp. and the family Veillonellaceae (including Megasphaera spp.) were more abundant in the urine of preterm-delivered women than in that of women with normal deliveries. Taken together, these data showed that Bacillus spp. EVs predominate in the urine of pregnant women, whereas Pseudomonas spp. EVs predominate in the urine of non-pregnant women; this suggests that Bacillus spp. EVs might have an important role in the maintenance of pregnancy.
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