Antibiotics are arguably the greatest medical development of the 20th century but these precious resources are being threatened by the continued rise in infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria. There is concern that we are on the precipice of a ‘post-antibiotic era’. The situation is exacerbated by a stagnation in the pharmaceutical industry in developing new antibiotics, particularly those with activity against some of the most resistant Gram-negative organisms because of significant economic, scientific, and regulatory barriers. One of the products of recent initiatives to reinvigorate the antibiotic pipeline is the agent ceftolozane/tazobactam. Ceftolozane/tazobactam was approved in December 2014 by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of complicated urinary tract infections and complicated intra-abdominal infections for patients 18 years of age and older. The safety and effectiveness of ceftolozane/tazobactam in pediatric patients has not been established in clinical studies. However, with the rise of highly drug-resistant Gram-negative organisms in children and the current climate of ongoing, multiple, and simultaneous antibiotic shortages—particularly of broad-spectrum antibiotics, the potential off-label role of ceftolozane/tazobactam for children needs to be explored while pediatric studies are ongoing. The objective of this opinion piece is to discuss what is currently known about ceftolozane/tazobactam and its potential implications for use in the pediatric population.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Pharmacology (medical)