Animal Models in Overactive Bladder Research

Part of the Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology book series (HEP, volume 2011)


Overactive bladder syndrome (OAB) is a symptom-based diagnosis characterised by the presence of urinary urgency. It is highly prevalent and overlaps with the presence of bladder contractions during urine storage, which characterises the urodynamic diagnosis of detrusor overactivity. Animal models are needed to understand the pathophysiology of OAB, but the subjective nature of the symptomcomplex means that interpretation of the findings in animals requires caution. Because urinary urgency cannot be ascertained in animals, surrogate markers such as frequency, altered toileting areas, and non-micturition contractions have to be used instead. No model can recapitulate the subjective, objective, and related factors seen in the clinical setting. Models used include partial bladder outlet obstruction, the spontaneous hypertensive rat, the hyperlipidaemic rat, various neurological insults and some gene knock-outs. Strengths and weaknesses of these models are discussed in the context of the inherent difficulties of extrapolating subjective symptoms in animals.


Adenosine triphosphate Animal models Detrusor overactivity Knock-out studies Nitric oxide Oestrogen Overactive bladder syndrome Prostaglandin Transgenic Urgency Uroplakin 



Adenosine triphosphate


Bladder outlet obstruction


Benign prostatic enlargement


Cyclooxygenase enzyme


Detrusor overactivity


Detrusor sphincter dyssynergia


Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis


Family of G-protein coupled receptors


Oestrogen receptor


International Continence Society


Middle cerebral artery


Neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine


Multiple sclerosis


Non-cholinergic non-adrenergic




Neuronal nitric oxide synthase


Overactive bladder syndrome


Purinergic receptor


Parkinson’s disease


Prostaglandin E2


Spontaneous hypertensive rat


Vanilloid receptor type 1


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Bristol Urological InstituteSouthmead HospitalBristolUK

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