The efficacies of daptomycin, teicoplanin, and vancomycin were compared in the therapy of experimental Staphylococcus aureus endocarditis. Rabbits infected with either of two methicillin-susceptible strains (SA-12871 or its moderately teicoplanin-resistant derivative SA-12873) or a methicillin-resistant S. aureus strain (MRSA-494) were treated with daptomycin, 8 mg/kg of body weight, every 8 h; teicoplanin, 12.5 mg/kg (low-dose teicoplanin [teicoplanin-LD], excluding MRSA-494) or 40 mg/kg (high-dose teicoplanin [teicoplanin-HD]) every 12 h; or vancomycin, 17.5 mg/kg every 6 h, for 4 days. Compared with no treatment daptomycin, teicoplamin-HD, and vancomycin significantly reduced bacterial counts of all test strains in vegetations and renal and splenic tissues (P less than 0.001). Teicoplanin-LD was equally effective against SA-12871 but failed against SA-12873, with three of six animals still being bacteremic at the end of therapy. For SA-12871, daptomycin was as effective as teicoplanin-HD and was superior to teicoplanin-LD and vancomycin (P = 0.02) in lowering vegetation bacterial counts. There were no differences between daptomycin, teicoplanin-HD, or vancomycin in the reduction of bacterial counts in tissues for any of the test strains. In rabbits infected with SA-12871, vegetations from 33% of teicoplanin-LD-treated, 6% of teicoplanin-HD-treated, and 13% of daptomycin-treated animals yielded organisms for which there were up to eightfold increases in the MICs. Resistance may have contributed to early death in one daptomycin-treated animal. No increases in the MICs for the test strain were detected in animals infected with SA-12873 or MRSA-494. We conclude that in this model and against these strains of S. aureus, daptomycin and teicoplanin-HD are as efficacious as vancomycin, but diminished susceptibility to both can develop during therapy.
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