Triclosan (2, 4, 4′-trichloro-2′-hydroxydiphenyl ether) is a bisphenol antimicrobial agent that can promote antibiotic resistance in bacteria. The purpose of the present study was to determine a possible association between triclosan exposure and bacterial susceptibility of the staphylococci to the antibiotic ciprofloxacin. Determining this relationship will allow a deeper understanding of triclosan's affects on the development of antibiotic resistance. For this study, a one month double-blind and randomized home hygiene intervention trial was conducted that consisted of 12 participants. Half of these individuals were randomly assigned to use a non-antibacterial soap, while the other half were assigned to use a similar appearing liquid soap containing 0.2%triclosan. The participants were required to use only those products that were assigned to them, and were asked not to change any of their other normal hygiene practices. If any of these participants were found to use any other home hygiene product that was not assigned to them, they were automatically dropped from this study. A hand-wash culture from each participant was taken before and after the use of the soap for the period of one month. These cultures were then plated on increasing concentrations of the antibiotic ciprofloxacin to determine if ciprofloxacin minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) and susceptibility trends changed in response to triclosan exposure. Although our sample size was not large enough for our results to be considered significant, the results do suggest that antibacterial soap containing triclosan does indeed decrease ciprofloxacin susceptibility in the staphylococci.
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