Brown University studies show that an experimental antibiotic promptly kills six strains of drug-resistant bacteria that cause respiratory tract infections, and that, at an equal dose, the antibiotic is more effective than an antibiotic now in use against different breeds of drug-resistant bacteria that cause staph infections, gastrointestinal illnesses or pneumonia.
The experimental drug is called moxifloxacin. The findings suggest it is a potential treatment against a range of drug-resistant infectious organisms that produce serious, even deadly illnesses. Resistance to penicillin and other antibiotics is increasing worldwide among bacterial strains.
A research team used lab tests to show that a single 400-mg moxifloxacin dose is enough to quickly kill six strains of Streptococcus pneumoniae, with no regrowth. The strains killed included those resistant to the antibiotics penicillin and erythromycin. Respiratory tract illnesses caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae are among the leading types of bacterial infections in many countries.
"The findings suggest that moxifloxacin should be useful in treating infections caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria, which are susceptible to treatment with, yet resistant to, penicillin and erythromycin," said Stephen Zinner, M.D., professor of medicine. Clinical trials are needed to confirm these findings, he said. Zinner presented the results last October at the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.
In November, at the Sixth International Symposium on New Quinolones and Related Antibiotics, Zinner reported that moxifloxacin, at equal doses, was more effective against different strains of resistant bacteria that cause staph infections, gastrointestinal illnesses or pneumonia than the antibiotic levofloxacin, currently used to treat a range of infections.