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Antibacterial Products Not Linked to Antibiotic Resistance


PROVO, Utah—According to a study published in the International Journal of Microbiology Research, an extensive community study of resident skin Staphylococcus showed no increased antibiotic resistance in participant groups regularly using wash products containing triclocarban (TCC) or triclosan (TCS), as compared with participants using wash products containing no TCC or TCS (2011;3(2):90-96).

Due to continued calls for more research investigating the relationship between the use of antibacterial wash products, and antibiotic and antibacterial resistance in human-source bacteria, researchers sought to describe susceptibilities in staphylococcal skin isolates from community users of antibacterial wash products, compared to isolates from non-users.

Qualified and randomly selected participants (n=210) comprised three equal groups:

  1. Those who frequently used wash products containing TCS; 
  2. Those who frequently used products containing TCC; 
  3. And a control group that used no antibacterial wash products.

A forearm swab sample was collected from each participant and processed for coagulasenegative Staphylococcus species and S. aureus (SA). Standard antibiotic and antibacterial minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) testing was performed on all isolates (n=317).

There was no statistically significant difference in antibiotic resistance in Staphylococcus isolates from regular antibacterial wash product users compared with non-users. None of the isolates were resistant to vancomycin, and the rate of methicillin resistant S. aureus (MRSA) detected was appreciably less than that reported in the literature for both hospital inpatient and outpatient isolates of SA. There was also a definitive lack of antibiotic/antibacterial cross-resistance. These findings add to and confirm previous yet limited community data showing a lack of evidence that the use of antibacterial wash products facilitates antibiotic resistance and antibiotic/antibacterial cross-resistance.


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