Enteric fever is a major public health problem in developing countries. Ciprofloxacin resistance has now become a norm in the Indian subcontinent. Novel molecular substitutions may become frequent in future owing to selective pressures exerted by the irrational use of ciprofloxacin in human and veterinary therapeutics, in a population endemic with nalidixic acid-resistant strains. The therapeutics of ciprofloxacin-resistant enteric fever narrows down to third- and fourth-generation cephalosporins, azithromycin, tigecycline and penems. The first-line antimicrobials ampicillin, chloramphenicol and co-trimoxazole need to be rolled back. Antimicrobial surveillance coupled with molecular analysis of fluoroquinolone resistance is warranted for reconfirming novel and established molecular patterns for therapeutic reappraisal and for novel-drug targets. This review explores the antimicrobial resistance and its molecular mechanisms, as well as novel drugs in the therapy of enteric fever.
Keywords: Azithromycin; Ciprofloxacin resistance; Enteric fever; Molecular targets; Penems; Tigecycline.