Journal Article

Enhanced efficacy of single-dose versus multi-dose azithromycin regimens in preclinical infection models

D. Girard, S. M. Finegan, M. W. Dunne and M. E. Lame

in Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Published on behalf of British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Volume 56, issue 2, pages 365-371
Published in print August 2005 | ISSN: 0305-7453
Published online July 2005 | e-ISSN: 1460-2091 | DOI:
Enhanced efficacy of single-dose versus multi-dose azithromycin regimens in preclinical infection models

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  • Medical Oncology
  • Critical Care


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Objectives: As a result of the prolonged half-life and unique pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic (PK-PD) characteristics of azithromycin, shorter dosing regimens are being evaluated for the treatment of community-acquired infections. To provide further support for a shorter dosing regimen, the efficacy of azithromycin was determined in preclinical infection models comparing single- versus multi-dose regimens.

Methods: The efficacy of single versus multi-dose regimens of azithromycin was compared in mouse pneumonia, acute peritonitis, and neutropenic thigh infection models and in a gerbil model of Haemophilus influenzae acute otitis media. Azithromycin was administered as a single oral dose on the first treatment day, or as two divided doses over 2 treatment days, or as three divided doses over 3 treatment days. The pharmacokinetics of azithromycin was profiled following single and multi-dose regimens with the single dose data fit to an Emax model to characterize the PK-PD of azithromycin.

Results: In the mouse efficacy models, administration of single-dose azithromycin produced superior rates of survival and bacterial clearance compared with the same total dose divided over 2 or 3 days. In the gerbil model, a single dose sterilized the middle ear and more rapidly cleared H. influenzae. The pharmacokinetic evaluation confirmed similar total exposure (AUC) in serum and pulmonary tissue for the three regimens. Correlation of PK-PD parameters and antimicrobial efficacy confirmed a concentration-dependent and dosing-independent relationship for azithromycin.

Conclusions: These data are consistent with data reported from clinical studies and indicate that a single-dose regimen would be at least as effective as the same dose administered over several days.

Keywords: azithromycin; clarithromycin; amoxicillin/clavulanate; single-dose regimen; acute otitis media; Haemophilus influenzae; Streptococcus pneumoniae

Journal Article.  5244 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Oncology ; Critical Care

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