Tigecycline for the treatment of multidrug-resistant Enterobacteriaceae: a systematic review of the evidence from microbiological and clinical studies

J Antimicrob Chemother. 2008 Nov;62(5):895-904. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkn311. Epub 2008 Aug 1.


Objectives: Antimicrobial drug resistance is spreading among Enterobacteriaceae, limiting the utility of traditionally used agents. We sought to systematically review the microbiological activity and clinical effectiveness of tigecycline for multidrug-resistant (MDR) Enterobacteriaceae, including those resistant to broad-spectrum beta-lactams due to the expression of extended-spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBLs), AmpC enzymes and carbapenemases (including metallo-beta-lactamases).

Methods: PubMed was searched for articles including relevant data.

Results: Twenty-six microbiological and 10 clinical studies were identified. Tigecycline was active against more than 99% of 1936 Escherichia coli isolates characterized by any of the above resistance patterns (including 1636 ESBL-producing isolates) using the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) breakpoint of susceptibility (MIC < or = 2 mg/L). Findings were not different using the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) breakpoint (< or = 1 mg/L). Susceptibility rates for Klebsiella spp. with any of the above resistance patterns were 91.2% for 2627 isolates by the FDA criteria and 72.3% for 1504 isolates by the EUCAST criteria (92.3% for 2030 and 72.3% for 1284 ESBL-producing isolates, by the FDA and EUCAST criteria, respectively). The degree of microbiological activity of tigecycline against 576 MDR Enterobacter spp. isolates was moderate. In clinical studies, 69.7% of the 33 reported patients treated with tigecycline achieved resolution of an infection caused by a carbapenem-resistant or ESBL-producing or MDR Enterobacteriaceae.

Conclusions: Tigecycline is microbiologically active against almost all of the ESBL or MDR E. coli isolates and the great majority of ESBL or MDR Klebsiella spp. isolates. Further evaluation of its clinical utility against such resistant Enterobacteriaceae, particularly regarding non-labelled indications, is warranted.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial*
  • Enterobacteriaceae / drug effects*
  • Enterobacteriaceae Infections / drug therapy*
  • Enterobacteriaceae Infections / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Minocycline / analogs & derivatives*
  • Minocycline / therapeutic use
  • Tigecycline
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States
  • beta-Lactamases / biosynthesis


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Tigecycline
  • beta-Lactamases
  • Minocycline