Efficacy of liposome-encapsulated ciprofloxacin in a murine model of Q fever

I. H. Norville, G. J. Hatch, K. R. Bewley, D. J. Atkinson, K. A. Hamblin, J. D. Blanchard, S. J. Armstrong, J. K. Pitman, Emma Rayner, Graham Hall, J. Vipond, T. P. Atkins*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Encapsulation of antibiotics may improve treatment of intracellular infections by prolonging antibiotic release and improving antibiotic uptake into cells. In this study, liposome-encapsulated ciprofloxacin for inhalation (CFI) was evaluated as a postexposure therapeutic for the treatment of Coxiella burnetii, the causative agent of Q fever. Intranasal treatment of male A/Jola (A/J) mice with CFI (50 mg/kg of body weight) once daily for 7 days protected mice against weight loss and clinical signs following an aerosol challenge with C. burnetii. In comparison, mice treated twice daily with oral ciprofloxacin or doxycycline (50 mg/kg) or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) lost 15 to 20% body weight and exhibited ruffled fur, arched backs, and dehydration. Mice were culled at day 14 postchallenge. The weights and bacterial burdens of organs were determined. Mice treated with CFI exhibited reduced splenomegaly and reduced bacterial numbers in the lungs and spleen compared to mice treated with oral ciprofloxacin or doxycycline. When a single dose of CFI was administered, it provided better protection against body weight loss than 7 days of treatment with oral doxycycline, the current antibiotic of choice to treat Q fever. These data suggest that CFI has potential as a superior antibiotic to treat Q fever.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5510-5518
Number of pages9
JournalAntimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2014


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