Currently Enrolling Trials
Merrem IV is a penem antibacterial.
Merrem IV is specifically indicated for the following:
- Complicated skin and skin structure infections (adult patients and pediatric patients 3 months of age and older only).
- Complicated intra-abdominal infections (adult and pediatric patients).
- Bacterial meningitis (pediatric patients 3 months of age and older only).
The recommended dose is as follows:
- 500 mg every 8 hours by intravenous infusion over 15 to 30 minutes for complicated skin and skin structure infections (cSSSI) for adult patients. When treating infections caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a dose of 1 gram every 8 hours is recommended.
- 1 gram every 8 hours by intravenous infusion over 15 minutes to 30 minutes for intra-abdominal infections for adult patients.
- 1 gram every 8 hours by intravenous bolus injection (5 mL to 20 mL) over 3 minutes to 5 minutes for adult patients.
Mechanism of Action
Meropenem is an antibacterial drug. The bactericidal activity of meropenem results from the inhibition of cell wall synthesis. Meropenem penetrates the cell wall of most gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria to bind penicillin-binding-protein (PBP) targets. Meropenem binds to PBPs 2, 3 and 4 of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa; and PBPs 1, 2 and 4 of Staphylococcus aureus. Bactericidal concentrations (defined as a 3 log10 reduction in cell counts within 12 hours to 24 hours) are typically 1–2 times the bacteriostatic concentrations of meropenem, with the exception of Listeria monocytogenes, against which lethal activity is not observed.
Adverse effects associated with the use of Merrem IV may include, but are not limited to, the following:
Clinical Trial Results
Complicated Skin and Skin Structure Infections
Adult patients with complicated skin and skin structure infections including complicated cellulitis, complex abscesses, perirectal abscesses, and skin infections requiring intravenous antimicrobials, hospitalization, and surgical intervention were enrolled in a randomized, multi-center, international, double-blind trial. The study evaluated meropenem at doses of 500 mg administered intravenously every 8 hours and imipenem-cilastatin at doses of 500 mg administered intravenously every 8 hours. The study compared the clinical response between treatment groups in the clinically evaluable population at the follow-up visit (test-of-cure). The trial was conducted in the United States, South Africa, Canada, and Brazil. At enrollment, approximately 37% of the patients had underlying diabetes, 12% had underlying peripheral vascular disease and 67% had a surgical intervention. The study included 510 patients randomized to meropenem and 527 patients randomized to imipenem-cilastatin. Two hundred and sixty one (261) patients randomized to meropenem and 287 patients randomized to imipenem-cilastatin were clinically evaluable. The success rates in the clinically evaluable patients at the follow-up visit were 86% (225/261) in the meropenem arm and 83% (238/287) in imipenem-cilastatin arm.
Complicated Intra-Abdominal Infections
One controlled clinical study of complicated intra-abdominal infection was performed in the United States where meropenem was compared with clindamycin/tobramycin. Three controlled clinical studies of complicated intra-abdominal infections were performed in Europe; meropenem was compared with imipenem (two trials) and cefotaxime/metronidazole (one trial). In two of the studies meropenem was equivalent to imipenem Meropenem was not statistically equivalent to cefotaxime/metronidazole which may have been due to uneven assignment of more seriously ill patients to the meropenem arm.
Four hundred forty-six patients (397 pediatric patients 3 months to less than 17 years of age) were enrolled in 4 separate clinical trials and randomized to treatment with meropenem (n=225) at a dose of 40 mg/kg every 8 hours or a comparator drug, i.e., cefotaxime (n=187) or ceftriaxone (n=34), at the approved dosing regimens. A comparable number of patients were found to be clinically evaluable (ranging from 61–68%) and with a similar distribution of pathogens isolated on initial CSF culture.