Episode Summary

Frequent urges to go “number one” can be the symptom of a urinary tract infection (UTI), one of the most common types of bacterial infections in humans. Usually the treatment of UTIs is quick and effective, but sometimes the organisms causing the infection can get into the kidneys and cause serious and even fatal disease.

Dr. Harry Mobley is a professor at the University of Michigan who studies UTIs caused by Escherichia coli and Proteus mirabilis. Mobley talks about the mystery of why some people get recurrent UTIs, the amazing ability of P. mirabilis to swarm, how E. coli in the GI tract is a source of UTIs, what are the prospects of a vaccine against UTIs, and how a trip to the CDC set him on his career path.

The microCase for listeners to solve is about Chad, a young college graduate who goes to his namesake country Chad, only to come down with a horrifying infection.


  • Karl Klose, Ph.D. (UTSA)
  • Harry Mobley, Ph.D. (University of Michigan)
  • Janakiram Seshu, Ph.D. (UTSA)
  • Mylea Echazarreta (UTSA)
  • Stephen Sinatra (UTSA)

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