Efficacy of increasing dosages of clarithromycin for treatment of experimental Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia

C. Tagliabue, C. Techasaensiri, J. P. Torres, K. Katz, C. Meek, T. R. Kannan, J. J. Coalson, S. Esposito, N. Principi, R. Leff, J. B. Baseman, R. D. Hardy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Mycoplasma pneumoniae respiratory infection is a common cause of acute respiratory infection in children and adults. We evaluated the efficacy of increasing dosages of clarithromycin for the optimized therapy of M. pneumoniae respiratory infection in a mouse model. Methods: BALB/c mice were intranasally inoculated once with M. pneumoniae or SP4 broth (control). Groups of mice were treated with increasing dosages of clarithromycin (10, 25 or 75 mg/kg/day) or placebo subcutaneously daily. Groups of mice were evaluated after 1, 2, 3, 6 and 12 days of therapy. Outcome variables included quantitative M. pneumoniae culture, histopathological score of the lungs, bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) cytokine/chemokine/growth factor concentrations and plethysmography after aerosolized methacholine to assess airway hyperresponsiveness. Results: Elevated dosages of clarithromycin resulted in greater antimicrobial efficacy with significantly reduced M. pneumoniae quantitative cultures (P <0.05), as well as greater improvement in markers of disease severity with significantly reduced lung histopathology scores, BAL cytokine concentrations and airway hyperresponsiveness (P <0.05). Conclusions: Escalated dosing of clarithromycin resulted in significantly greater therapeutic efficacy in the treatment of experimental M. pneumoniae respiratory infection.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberdkr306
Pages (from-to)2323-2329
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011


  • Asthma
  • Cytokines
  • Macrolides
  • Pharmacodynamics
  • Pharmacokinetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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