top of page


Invivo studies on antibiotic combination for the treatmentof carbapenem-resistant Gram-negative bacteria: a systematic review and meta-analysis protocol

Righi E, Scudeller L, Chiamenti M, Abdelraouf K, Lodise T, Carrara E, Savoldi A, Menghin D, Pellizzari G, Ellis S, Franceschi F

Objective: There is poor evidence to determine the superiority of combination regimens versus monotherapy against infections due to carbapenem-resistant (CR) Gram-negative bacteria. In vivo models can simulate the pathophysiology of infections in humans and assess antibiotic efficacy. We aim to investigate in vivo effects of antibiotic combination on mortality and disease burden for infections due to CR Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacteriaceae and provide an unbiased overview of existing knowledge. The results of the study can help prioritising future research on the most promising therapies against CR bacteria.

Methods and analysis: This protocol was formulated using the Systematic Review Protocol for Animal Intervention Studies (SYRCLE) Checklist. Publications will be collected from PubMed, Scopus, Embase and Web of Science. Quality checklists adapted by Collaborative Approach to Meta-Analysis and Review of Animal Data from Experimental Studies and SYRCLE's risk of bias tool will be used. If the meta-analysis seems feasible, the ES and the 95% CI will be analysed. The heterogeneity between studies will be assessed by I2 test. Subgroup meta-analysis will be performed when possible to assess the impact of the studies on efficacy of the treatments. Funnel plotting will be used to evaluate the risk of publication bias.

Dissemination: This systematic review and meta-analysis is part of a wider research collaboration project, the COmbination tHErapy to treat sepsis due to carbapenem-Resistant bacteria in adult and paediatric population: EvideNCE and common practice (COHERENCE) study that includes also the analyses of in vitro and human studies. Data will be presented at international conferences and the results will be published in peer-reviewed journals.

Prospero registration number: CRD42019128104(available at:

bottom of page