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Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2005 Jan;25(1):44-50.

Synergistic effect of fosfomycin and arbekacin on a methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus-induced biofilm in a rat model.

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Division of Clinical Nutrition, Department of Nutrition, Sagami Women's University, 2-1-1 Bunkyo, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 228-8533, Japan.


Biofilms are a major concern for clinicians in the treatment of infectious disease because of the resistance to a wide range of antibiotics. Using a rat air pouch model, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) growing as a biofilm was treated with a combination of fosfomycin (FOM) and arbekacin (ABK) or by the agents alone. This model has the advantage of permitting frequent sampling of exudates for bacterial counts and anti-bacterial activity, and morphological examination of the biofilm structure and inflammatory process in the pouch tissues. A clear synergistic effect was observed in the rats treated with a combination of fosfomycin and arbekacin. Morphological studies using scanning electron microscopy and histological staining showed dramatic changes of the biofilm structure as well as the inflammatory response in the rats. These results suggested an enhancement of bactericidal activity of arbekacin penetrating through the biofilm layer by virtue of fosfomycin. A possible mechanism of the synergistic effect is discussed.

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