Mode of action of colistin - resistance mechanisms

Peter A. Lambert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputConference publication


Colistin has a physical mechanism of action. It damages membranes with a lethal effect and does not inhibit enzymes or sophisticated cellular systems. Colistin has a self-promoted uptake mechanism and ultimately targets the cytoplasmic membrane. It is bactericidal at low concentrations. Resistance rates are very low, although resistance is possible.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Congress and Symposium Series - Royal Society of Medicine
EditorsD. Geddes
Place of PublicationLondon (UK)
PublisherRSM Press
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9781853155895
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2004

Publication series

NameInternational Congress and Symposium Series of the Royal Society of Medicine
PublisherRoyal Society of Medicine Press Ltd
ISSN (Print)0142-2367


  • colistin
  • resistance mechanisms


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