Medically reviewed by C. Fookes, BPharm Last updated on Jun 6, 2019.
What are Carbapenems/beta-lactamase inhibitors?
Carbapenems/beta-lactamase inhibitors are medicines that combine a carbapenem with a beta-lactamase inhibitor.
Carbapenems are antibiotics that have natural stability against most beta-lactamase enzymes. However, bacteria can acquire or develop structural changes in the protein units that make up their cell wall and acquire metallo-beta-lactamases that are capable of rapidly degrading carbapenems. For certain infections, a carbapenem in combination with a beta-lactamase inhibitor may be preferred.
Beta-lactamase inhibitors block the activity of beta-lactamase enzymes (also called beta-lactamases), preventing the degradation of beta-lactam antibiotics. Clavulanic acid, sulbactam, tazobactam, and vaborbactam are all beta-lactamase inhibitors. Because they have little antibiotic activity of their own, they are almost always combined with an antibiotic.
Carbapenems/beta-lactamase inhibitors increase the spectrum of activity of a carbapenem and make it harder for bacteria to develop resistance against that particular carbapenem.
List of Carbapenems/beta-lactamase inhibitors:
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Generic name: meropenem / vaborbactam
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