Penetration of glycopeptide antibiotics in nucleus pulposus

Gaetano J. Scuderi, Steven S. Greenberg, Kresimir Banovac, Octavio V. Martinez, Frank J. Eismont

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


The penetration of the glycopeptide antibiotics vancomycin and teicoplanin into the nucleus pulposus of rabbits was studied. Blood samples were obtained at 0.5, 1, 4, 8, and 24 hours after intravenous administration of 30 mg/kg vancomycin or 16 mg/kg teicoplanin. Concentrations of antibiotics were determined in tissue specimens and serum samples by fluorescence polarization immunoassays. Antimicrobial activity in the nucleus pulposus was determined with an agar diffusion method using a strain of Micrococcus luteus as the indicator organism. A peak concentration of vancomycin in the nucleus pulposus was attained 8 hours after drug administration. Teicoplanin reached its maximum level and plateaued 1 and 2 hours, respectively, after injection, and it remained unchanged for the rest of the study. This microbiologic analysis showed that the nucleus pulposus contained an antimicrobial level of glycopeptide antibiotics after administration. Because rabbit nucleus pulposus is similar anatomically to that of humans, these results may have implications regarding the timing and choice of antibiotic administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2039-2042
Number of pages4
Issue number14
StatePublished - Oct 1993


  • nucleus pulposus
  • teicoplanin
  • tissue antibiotics
  • vancomycin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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