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Low antibiotic resistance among anaerobic Gram-negative bacteria in periodontitis 5 years following metronidazole therapy.

Journal article
Authors Gunnar Dahlén
H R Preus
Published in Anaerobe
Volume 43
Pages 94-98
ISSN 1095-8274
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Odontology, Section 3
Pages 94-98
Language en
Subject categories Oral microbiology


The objective of this study was to assess antibiotic susceptibility among predominant Gram-negative anaerobic bacteria isolated from periodontitis patients who 5 years prior had been subject to mechanical therapy with or without adjunctive metronidazole. One pooled sample was taken from the 5 deepest sites of each of 161 patients that completed the 5 year follow-up after therapy. The samples were analyzed by culture. A total number of 85 anaerobic strains were isolated from the predominant subgingival flora of 65/161 patient samples, identified, and tested for antibiotic susceptibility by MIC determination. E-tests against metronidazole, penicillin, amoxicillin, amoxicillin + clavulanic acid and clindamycin were employed. The 73/85 strains were Gram-negative rods (21 Porphyromonas spp., 22 Prevotella/Bacteroides spp., 23 Fusobacterium/Filifactor spp., 3 Campylobacter spp. and 4 Tannerella forsythia). These were all isolated from the treated patients irrespective of therapy procedures (+/-metronidazole) 5 years prior. Three strains (Bifidobacterium spp., Propionibacterium propionicum, Parvimonas micra) showed MIC values for metronidazole over the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing break point of >4 μg/mL. All Porphyromonas and Tannerella strains were highly susceptible. Metronidazole resistant Gram-negative strains were not found, while a few showed resistance against beta-lactam antibiotics. In this population of 161 patients who had been subject to mechanical periodontal therapy with or without adjunct metronidazole 5 years prior, no cultivable antibiotic resistant anaerobes were found in the predominant subgingival microbiota.

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