Antibacterial Effects of Hyperbaric Oxygen.
Final rept. 1 May 66-30 Sep 74,
LOUISIANA STATE UNIV MEDICAL CENTER NEW ORLEANS DEPT OF SURGERY
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The research was concerned with inhibitory effects of an environment of hyperbaric oxygen on bacterial growth. A portion of the effort was directed to experimental epidemiological studies of the development and transfer of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in gnotobiotic mice. Hyperbaric oxygen 3 atm absolute was a bactericidal agent for bacteria exposed either in vitro or in vivo. The bactericidal effect was dependent upon the duration and intensity of exposure, and was independent of common taxonomical characteristics of bacteria. Exposure of broth cultures to hyperbaric O2 and an antibiotic enhanced antibiotic activity 3-fold. Significantly less killing occurred when bacteria were exposed to high pressure O2 enriched with CO2. Survival of rats with experimental burn wound sepsis was not enhanced by exposure to hyperbaric O2. However, an in vivo bactericidal effect was demonstrated in the colonic flora of rats breathing 100 O2 at 3 atm. Exposure of susceptible bacteria to an antibiotic tetracycline or kanamycin in the intestinal tract of germfree mice monoassociated with either Staphylococcus aureus or Serratia marcescens was accompanied by bacterial mutation to resistance to the specific drug. Author