• The effects of antibiotics and other commonly used medications on the human polymorphonuclear neutrophil leukocytes' (PMNs) nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphatereduced (NADPH) oxidase activity have been investigated in vitro. Five antibiotics (penicillin G sodium, cefamandole nafate, metronidazole hydrochloride, clindamycin phosphate, and tobramycin sulfate, and a triple combination of penicillin G sodium-metronidazole hydrochloride-tobramycin sulfate) and two sedatives (morphine sulfate and diazepam) were incubated with normal human PMNs at therapeutic, infratherapeutic, and supratherapeutic drug levels. The superoxide dismutase-inhibitable, NADPH-dependent reduction of cytochrome C in the PMNs was studied after stimulation with formyl-methionyl-leucine-phenylalanine. Tobramycin sulfate and the triple combination of penicillin G sodium—metronidazole hydrochloride-tobramycin sulfate significantly reduced the NADPH oxidase activity at all dosages studied. Clindamycin phosphate, morphine sulfate, and diazepam also showed significant reduction at therapeutic and supratherapeutic concentrations. Penicillin G sodium, cefamandole nafate, and metronidazole hydrochloride did not cause a decrease in enzyme activity at any levels tested. We conclude that NADPH oxidase activity can be adversely affected by the circulating levels of common antibiotics and sedatives.
(Arch Surg 1986;121:73-76)