July 13, 2010

MRCP 1 Question 19

A 34 year old woman has an atypical pneumonia suspected to be secondary to Mycoplasma Pneumonia.

The penicillin group of antibiotics are ineffective for the treatment of pneumonia caused by mycoplasma pneumoniae because:

a) mycoplasma produce Beta lactamase enzyme which breaks down penicillin
b) mycoplasma lack a cell wall
c) mycoplasma belong to category of viruses
d) mycoplasma are non-sporing organisms
e) the above statement is untrue

The correct answer is B


Penicillin group of antibiotics bring about their bactericidal action by selective inhibition of bacterial cell wall synthesis.

Mycoplasma are a group of bacteria which are devoid of a cell wall.

Due to the absence of a cell wall these bacteria are naturally resistant to the action of penicillin group of antibiotics. Therefore penicillins are of no use for the treatment of pneumonia caused by mycoplasma pneumoniae.

Mycoplasma does not produce beta lactamase enzyme for the breakdown of penicillins. Mycoplasma are not viruses. They are classified as bacteria.

The non-sporing nature of mycoplasma has no relation to their sensitivity to penicillin. A large number of non-sporing organisms are sensitive to penicillin.

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