Comparison of the in vitro effects of amoxicillin and ampicillin on the polymorphonuclear neutrophil respiratory burst


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Abstract

ObjectivesThe aim was to compare the in vitro effects of amoxicillin and ampicillin on the oxidative metabolism of polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs).MethodsSuperoxide radical anion production by PMNs, stimulated or not by various exogenous stimulants and in contact with increasing antibiotic concentrations, was measured using spectrophotometric methods.ResultsWhereas a pro-oxidative action of amoxicillin on PMNs was obtained without exogenous stimulation or with opsonized zymosan (OZ), the O2 production by PMNs incubated with ampicillin did not increase significantly.ConclusionsThis amoxicillin pro-oxidative effect could be due to the activation of the PMN NADPH oxidase, to its induction by a membrane effect or via the OZ pathway. It probably reinforces amoxicillin intrinsic bactericidal action and might partly explain the severe rashes sometimes occurring with amoxicillin treatment.

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