SCREENING METHODS: Application methods(1)

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While in vitro tests can give a good deal of information antimicrobial performance, they cannot necessarily duplicate all the variability which might exist in a plant. Therefore, once it has been determined that the antimicrobial performs well in an in vitro situation, it should be applied to in vivo system. Without the screening method data, it is difficult to determine starting concentrations.

Combination studies

Antimicrobial combinations are selected for various reasons

1) To attain broad-spectrum activity for empiric therapy in critically ill patients or when polymicrobial infection is suspected.

2) To minimize drug toxicity by using the lowest possible doses of two or more agents that have additive efficacies but independent toxicities, or to reduce the potential for development of resistance to one agent.

Combined antimicrobial agents have been extensively studied in the pharmaceutical industry, and methods have been developed to determine types of interactions between two antimicrobials (Barry, 1976; Krogstad and Moellering, 1986; Squires and Cleeland, 1985). When two antimicrobials are used in combination, three things may occur. First, there may be an additive effect i.e. the combined effect is equal to the sum of the effects observed with the two agents tested separately or equal to that of the most active agent in combination (Barry, 1976).

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