Urease test

Specimen:

Gastric or duodenal endoscopic biopsy.

Method:

Bacterial urease is detected by a colour change when urea is hydrolysed to ammonia.

Application:

Detection of Helicobacter pylori in gastric or duodenal mucosa.

Interpretation:

Presence of urease activity is very suggestive of the presence of H. pylori, but this test is less sensitive than histology of gastric biopsy for the detection of H. pylori.

Reference:

Dunn  BE et al. Clin Microbiol Rev. 1997; 10: 720-741.