Send to

Choose Destination
J Antimicrob Chemother. 2002 Dec;50 Suppl S2:59-73.

Dynamics of nasopharyngeal colonization by potential respiratory pathogens.

Author information

Departamento de Microbiología, Hospital Universitario de Salamanca, Facultad de Medicina, Ps. S. Vicente 108, 37007 Salamanca, Spain.


Studies have shown that colonization of the nasopharynx by potential respiratory pathogens Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae and Moraxella catarrhalis is established early in childhood, although rates vary greatly according to locality, sampling frequency, individual and social factors. Factors influencing colonization and elimination are not as yet fully understood, but adhesion to mucosal receptors and immune responses are implicated in addition to bacterial properties and colonization resistance dynamics. Colonization in children and adults has been intensively studied in various localities. Potential pathogens are more likely to colonize the nasopharynx of children prone to recurrent otitis media, where impaired local immunity and repeated exposure to respiratory pathogens are additional risk factors. Adults with chronic respiratory tract disease also have higher carriage rates. The factors contributing to increased risk of carriage of potential respiratory pathogens, as well as to clinical infection and antimicrobial resistance, are summarized in this review.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center