Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Urinary Biomarkers of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Women with Cystocele

Technology #5916

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Mitchell B. Berger
Managed By
Tiefei Dong
Senior Licensing Specialist, Life Sciences 734-763-5332

Biomarkers are increasingly being identified as objective and non invasive tools in clinical diagnosis of Lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) associated with cystocele (pelvic organ prolapse or bladder prolapse), overactive bladder (OAB), etc. LUTS are a group of symptoms that include discomfort and problems with emptying the urinary bladder. LUTS is associated with pelvic floor disorders such as cystocele amongst other conditions. Cystocele is a medical condition where the tough fibrous supportive tissue between a woman’s bladder and the vagina weakens and allows the bladder to herniate into the vagina. Cystocele is often surgically repaired and has recurrence rates as high as 41%. Currently, LUTS associated with cystocele are diagnosed using invasive and semi-invasive methods such as internal pelvic examination voiding cystourethrogram and urodynamic tests. A simple, non-invasive diagnostic tool will therefore be well accepted by patients and facilitate better and easy continuum of care for patients who undergo surgery for cystocele.

Unique urinary biomarkers for non-invasive diagnosis of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Women with Cystocele

Researchers at the University of Michigan have identified urinary biomarkers of LUTS which will facilitate non-invasive diagnosis of cystocele in women. These biomarkers facilitate non-invasive diagnosis of LUTS in women with cystocele and in women who undergo surgical correction for organ prolapse by using urine samples of patients. Comparing clinical data from women with and without cystocele, and women whose LUTS do or do not improve after prolapse repair five unique and differentially expressed biomarkers were identified. These biomarkers are novel to LUTS and cystocele. They present a novel combined expression profile associated with postop improvement of LUTS.


  • Diagnose severe lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in women with cystocele
  • Monitor the resolution of LUTS post surgical pelvic organ prolapse repair
  • Predict which patients will require other treatments, such as medications, to improve LUTS (other than surgery alone)
  • Provide justification for proceeding with surgery as treatment if government/insurance regulations require it
  • Use in research on LUTS, pelvic organ prolapse and etiology for the persistence of these symptoms post- surgical repair
  • Targets for gene therapy and treatment of LUTS


  • First non-invasive diagnostic tool for LUTS in women with cystocele
  • Urine is easily obtained in a minimally or non-invasive process
  • Urine-based tests well-accepted by patients and widely used in clinical settings.
  • Urine collection does not require complicated or expensive equipment
  • Highly sensitive and specific predictive value
  • Easier and better continuum of care for patients post surgical treatment of cystocele