BACKGROUND: The presence of multi-drug resistant Acinetobacter baumannii raises a big therapeutic challenge in our hospital. Tigecycline, a new glycylcycline with expanded broad spectrum of activity against multi-drug resistant organisms was recently licensed in South Africa.
AIM: The aim of this study was to evaluate the in vitro activity of tigecycline against carbapenem resistant A. baumannii complex.
METHODS: Consecutive clinical isolates of carbapenem resistant A. baumannii complex were collected between February and July 2010. Species identification and susceptibility testing was performed by Vitek-2 colorimetric compact system with Advanced Expert System (AES). Strains were tested for carbapenemase production by the
modified Hodge test, according to the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) guidelines.
RESULTS: A total of 232 carbapenem resistant clinical isolates of A. baumannii complex were collected over the six months study period; 217 (93.5%) of these were modified Hodge test positive. All isolates were susceptible to colistin and 174 (78%) susceptible to amikacin whilst 20 (9%) were susceptible to ciprofloxacin. For tigecycline 169
(75.8%) were fully susceptible, 37 (16.6%) intermediately resistant and only 17 (7.6%) were fully resistant. None of the carbapenem resistant isolates were susceptible to ampicillin, amoxicillin/clavullanic acid, piperacillin/tazobactam, cefuroxime, cefuroxime axetil, cefoxitin, cefepime or nitrofurantoin.
CONCLUSION: All carbapenem resistant isolates were found to be fully susceptible to colistin; amikacin and tigecycline susceptibility was 78% and 76% respectively. Treatment options for infections due to carbapenem and multi-drug resistant A. baumannii organisms are limited and hence tigecycline and amikacin may be considered.
The properties of tigecycline i.e. stability, safety, low toxicity, non cross-resistance with other antibiotics and its efficacy against multi-drug resistant A. baumannii isolates make it a good choice. However, ongoing monitoring of A. baumannii susceptibility to tigecycline is needed.