The clinical significance of endotoxin released by antibiotics: What is the evidence?

C. N. Mock, Gregory Jurkovich, D. Dries, R. V. Maier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Basic investigations indicate variation among antibiotics in their propensity to release endotoxin from bacterial cells. Evidence for the clinical significance of this phenomenon includes: anecdotal reports; studies evaluating changes in endotoxin levels in response to antibiotics in a variety of infectious diseases; two studies which have prospectively evaluated changes in endotoxin levels in response to different antibiotics and correlated the changes with the patients' clinical course; and one study which evaluated differences in mortality in injured patients based on the endotoxin-releasing potential of antibiotics they received. These studies suggest: (i) different types of antibiotics do induce differing levels of endotoxin release during treatment of bacterial infections in humans; (ii) such antibiotic-associated endotoxin release probably does have a biologic consequence; and (iii) this biologic consequence is possibly of clinical relevance. However, the data are not sufficient to advocate changes in current antibiotic prescribing or dosing decisions. Rather, a variety of in vitro and in vivo experiments as well as clinical studies are advocated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)253-259
Number of pages7
JournalInnate Immunity
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Immunology
  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases


Dive into the research topics of 'The clinical significance of endotoxin released by antibiotics: What is the evidence?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this