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Hope for faster treatment of urinary infections

Current methods for investigating UTIs rely on culturing bacteria.

Current methods for investigating UTIs rely on culturing bacteria.

By BBC / KBC

Urinary tract infections can be treated more quickly using a new DNA sequencing device, according to research.

Scientists from the University of East Anglia (UEA) say the device – the size of a USB stick – can detect bacteria directly from urine samples four times more quickly than traditional methods.

The technology could lead to faster treatment and better use of antibiotics, they say.

The findings were unveiled at a medical conference in San Diego.

Prof David Livermore, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said there was a need to move beyond the current “carpet-bombing” approach to treating urinary tract infections (UTIs).

“The way to do so lies in accelerating laboratory investigation, so that treatment can be refined earlier, benefitting the patient, who gets an effective antibiotic, and society, whose diminishing stock of antibiotics is better managed,” he said.

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