Quinupristin/dalfopristin: spectrum of activity, pharmacokinetics, and initial clinical experience

Microb Drug Resist. Fall 1995;1(3):223-34. doi: 10.1089/mdr.1995.1.223.


In recent years, the prevalence of multiple drug-resistant strains of common Gram-positive pathogens has grown in many regions of the world. Increasingly, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, coagulase-negative staphylococci, vancomycin-resistant enterococci, and penicillin-resistant pneumococci have been identified as causative organisms in serious and life-threatening infections. This increase in resistance highlights the need for new antimicrobial agents to expand the therapeutic armamentarium. Quinupristin/dalfopristin is the first of a unique class of antibiotics called streptogramins. It is characterized by a unique mechanism of action, intracellular activity, synergistic activity of its components, broad spectrum of activity against most Gram-positive cocci, common respiratory pathogens, and anaerobes, and demonstrated postantibiotic effect. Clinical evidence to date indicates that quinupristin/dalfopristin may be effective for the treatment of multidrug-resistant infections, especially those due to vancomycin-resistant enterococci and methicillin-resistant staphylococci. This article reviews the pharmacology, microbiology, and clinical experience with quinupristin/dalfopristin to date.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacokinetics
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Virginiamycin / pharmacokinetics
  • Virginiamycin / pharmacology*
  • Virginiamycin / therapeutic use*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Virginiamycin
  • quinupristin-dalfopristin