Rosalind Mary Maskell

BMJ 2016; 355 doi: (Published 18 November 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;355:i6147
  1. Juan C Mason

“The work of Rosalind Maskell is unknown to many; yet, clearly ahead of her time, she performed scientifically rigorous studies that provided compelling evidence to disprove the dogma that urine was sterile in the absence of a clinically relevant infection.” This accolade appears in a 2015 AJOG paper entitled “The new world of the urinary microbiota in women” from the Loyola University Urinary Research Collaboration, Chicago. Although the identification of bacteria by modern DNA sequencing techniques was unavailable to her research in the 1970s and 80s, Rosalind Maskell did pioneer the use of expanded urine culture methods, which are now recognised as an important component of urinary infection analysis.

Initially inclined to the arts, it was perhaps the influence of her mother, A G Rewcastle (the first …

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