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01.08.2010 | Commentary | Ausgabe 4/2010

Critical Care 4/2010

Macrolides and community-acquired pneumonia: is quorum sensing the key?

Critical Care > Ausgabe 4/2010
Matt P Wise, David W Williams, Michael AO Lewis, Paul J Frost
Wichtige Hinweise

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


Combination therapy with two antimicrobial agents is superior to monotherapy in severe community-acquired pneumonia, and recent data suggest that addition of a macrolide as the second antibiotic might be superior to other combinations. This observation requires confirmation in a randomised control trial, but this group of antibiotics have pleiotropic effects that extend beyond bacterial killing. Macrolides inhibit bacterial cell-to-cell communication or quorum sensing, which not only might be an important mechanism of action for these drugs in severe infections but may also provide a novel target for the development of new anti-infective drugs.

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