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How Does Pseudomonas aeruginosa Affect the Pharma Industry?

by Felix MONTERO-JULIAN PhD — March 02, 2020

Pseudomonas aeruginosa


What is Pseudomonas aeruginosa?

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a gram negative, rod-shaped bacterium found widely in the environment, such as in soil, water, and plants. They usually do not cause infections in healthy people, but if they do, it is generally mild. It can cause disease in plants and animals, including humans. A species of considerable medical importance, P. aeruginosa is a multidrug resistant pathogen recognized for its intrinsically advanced antibiotic resistance mechanisms and its association with serious illnesses, including hospital-acquired infections such as ventilator-associated pneumonia and various sepsis syndromes.

This article gives an overview of:

● The Pseudomonas aeruginosa
● How Pseudomonas aeruginosa is transmitted
● How Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be detected, prevented and controlled
● The risks of Pseudomonas aeruginosa for patients
● Treating Pseudomonas aeruginosa
● Industries affected by Pseudomonas aeruginosa
● bioMérieux’s products and solutions for detecting and preventing Pseudomonas aeruginosa



How is the Pseudomonas aeruginosa transmitted? 

Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria spread in hospitals via the hands of healthcare workers, or by hospital equipment that is not properly cleaned. A Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection is considered an opportunistic infection, meaning that the organism only causes disease when a person's immune system is already impaired.

How can Pseudomonas aeruginosa be detected, prevented and controlled?

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is primarily diagnosed through blood cultures. Keeping a healthy lifestyle is one of the main keys in protecting an individual from being burdened by the microorganism. Good hygiene, proper nutrition, and careful antibiotic use prevent a Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection.

How can the presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa be detected in pharmaceutical products?

Contamination of pharmaceuticals with microorganisms, irrespective of whether they are harmful or nonpathogenic, can bring about changes in the chemical characteristics of medicines. The presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be identified through various microbiological testing methods.


How can Pseudomonas aeruginosa be controlled in the pharmaceutical industry?

Industry control guidelines provide recommendations on how best to effectively control the presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The list of recommendations provided includes:

● Procedures to assure adequate quality of incoming materials.
● Sanitary design, maintenance and cleaning of equipment.
● Production and storage time limitations.
● Monitoring of environmental conditions.
● Providing appropriate product specifications (tests, methods, and acceptance criteria) in applications submitted to the regulatory bodies for new drug applications.
● Where appropriate, additional laboratory tests to determine if products are suitable for release.
● Ensuring that the methods used to test finished drug products prior to release for distribution are appropriately validated, accurate, sensitive, specific and reproducible.
● Testing in-process materials during the production process (e.g., at commencement or completion of significant phases, or after storage for long periods).
● Using valid in-process specifications to ensure that the drug product will meet its final specification, including the criteria for absence of microbial contamination.
● Investigating any failure to meet specifications, including other batches of the same drug product and other drug products that may have been associated with the specific failure or discrepancy.
● Implementing appropriate corrective and follow-up actions to prevent recurrence.

What are the risks of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to the patient?

Healthy people usually have at low risk of infection. People who already have a weakened immune system because of another illness or condition are at a higher risk of infection. This is especially true for people who are hospitalized for an extended period of time.

What is the treatment for Pseudomonas aeruginosa contamination?

Pseudomonas infections are treated with antibiotics. Unfortunately, many Pseudomonas infections are becoming more difficult to treat due to antibiotic resistance.



● Pseudomonas aeruginosa have a good resistance to antibiotics and common disinfectants.
● Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be found in the environment, in soil, coastal areas, plant/animal tissues.
● Pseudomonas aeruginosa is commonly associated with biofilm formation.
● Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen.


What common industries are affected by Pseudomonas aeruginosa?

Pseudomonas aeruginosa affects the following industries:
● Non-sterile Pharma & Personal Care
● Compounding and Hospital Pharmacy Solutions
● Alternative & Cellular Therapies Solutions



Scientific Director Healthcare Business
Healthcare Business Industry Unit
bioMérieux SA, France


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