Date Approved


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Molecular Pathology and Immunology


Molecular Biology


Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

First Advisor

Salvatore Caradonna, PhD

Committee Member 1

Grant Gallagher, PhD

Committee Member 2

Scott Gygax, PhD

Committee Member 3

Joseph Nickels, PhD

Committee Member 4

Jason Trama, PhD


Bacteria, Aerobic, Vaginitis, Diagnosis, Diagnostic Techniques and Procedures, Therapeutics, Bacterial Infections


Bacteria | Bacterial Infections and Mycoses | Diagnosis | Female Urogenital Diseases and Pregnancy Complications | Immunology and Infectious Disease | Medicine and Health Sciences | Obstetrics and Gynecology | Pathological Conditions, Signs and Symptoms | Therapeutics | Urology


Aerobic vaginitis (AV) is a more recently defined infection that involves aerobic pathogenic bacteria that replace the normal flora of the vaginal tract. It is commonly mistaken for other vaginal infections, such as bacterial vaginosis (BV), because they share many common symptoms. AV leads to complications during pregnancy, such as premature delivery and amnion infection, and is diagnosed by indications that range from vaginal discharge to inflammation. Because this infection is difficult to diagnose differentially from other vaginal infections, it is important to determine what pathogens are involved in AV so that we may have the ability to detect them. Successful diagnosis would allow for effective treatment of this new infection, and this must be accomplished by determining which bacterial organisms to include in a diagnostic assay. Once this assay is established and screening patients for AV becomes more successful, progress will lead further to determine an effective therapeutic option for these AV positive patients. The hypotheses of this thesis are that the current MDL diagnostic assay is in need of enhancement and further development, and that treatment options for AV infection must be better established. In this series of experiments, the bacterial pathogens involved in these infections were identified and alterations to the current assay have been determined. Possible therapeutic options for AV pathogens have also been identified as well as the characterization of the strains of bacteria involved in AV infection.