Propionibacterium acnes


Anaerobic Gram-positive nonspore-forming bacilli:
>Bi?dobacterium species
>Propionibacterium led


  • Gram-positive, rod shaped, slow-growing, nonsporeforming, anaerobic bacteria.
  • Unique metabolism: able to synthesize propionic acid by using unusual transcarboxylase enzymes.
  • Flora:  primarily facultative parasites and commensals of humans and other animals, living in and around the sweat glands, sebaceous glands, and other areas of the skin.
  • Usually innocuous, however,  have been implicated in acne and other skin conditions.
  • Species include:
    • P. acnes;
    • P. avidum;
    • P. cyclohexanicum;
    • P. freudenreichii;
    • P. granulosum;
    • P. jensenii;
    • P. microaerophilum;
    • P. propionicum

top of page


Important considerations:  The choice of an agent should be based on local antimicrobial sensitivities, site of infection, cost, and comorbid conditions.   Generally, the most common agents/regimens are listed first.  Listed dosages may need to be adjusted for renal dysfunction.   Propionibacterium strains are usually highly susceptible to penicillins, clindamycin, cephalosporins, and carbapenems .

  1. Penicillin G 2-4 million units IV q4-6h
  2. Clindamycin  600mg IV every 6 or 8 hours or 300mg orally four times daily  (~15% of strains are resistant)
  3. Ceftriaxone 1-2 grams IV q24h  (range: 1-2 grams q12-24h)
  4. Cefazolin 1 to 2 g IV every eight hours
  5. Vancomycin 1 gram  ivpb q12h (patient-specific dosing required)
  6. Linezolid 600 mg orally or IV q 12h
  7. Daptomycin 4 – 6 mg/kg IV once daily.  – NOT FOR PNEUMONIA


The authors make no claims of the accuracy of the information contained herein; and these suggested doses are not a substitute for clinical judgment. Neither GlobalRPh Inc. nor any other party involved in the preparation of this program shall be liable for any special, consequential, or exemplary damages resulting in whole or part from any user’s use of or reliance upon this material.PLEASE READ THE DISCLAIMER CAREFULLY BEFORE ACCESSING OR USING THIS SITE. BY ACCESSING OR USING THIS SITE, YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS SET FORTH IN THE DISCLAIMER. Read the disclaimer