Performance of the fractional maximal effect method: Comparative interaction studies of ciprofloxacin and protein synthesis inhibitors

R. C. Li, D. E. Nix, J. J. Schentag

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7 Scopus citations


The performance of the recently developed Fractional Maximal Effect (FME) method was evaluated along with the conventional checkerboard technique and time-kill method. Ciprofloxacin in combination with tobramycin was tested against Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa and in combination with tetracycline, chloramphenicol, erythromycin against Escherichia coli. Two combinations, amoxicillin-tetracycline (antagonistic) and tobramycin-ticarcillin (synergistic), were included as reference interactions. The FME method unequivocally showed an antagonistic interaction between ciprofloxacin and all the protein synthesis inhibitors (PSIs) tested, while the other two methods yielded variable results. At a total FME (TFME) level of 1, the FME method demonstrated a similar degree of antagonism against ciprofloxacin by tetracycline, chloramphenicol, and erythromycin, and much lower by tobramycin. Internal consistency of the FME operation was demonstrated by the identical conclusions obtained at both TFME levels of 0.5 and 1. The FME method appears to be a practical alternative for resolving the inconsistencies observed in conventional methods of antibiotic combination testing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-32
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Chemotherapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996



  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Comparison
  • Conventional assay methods
  • Fractional maximal effect method
  • Interaction
  • Protein synthesis inhibitors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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