Infection-associated biofilms and statins: Protocol for systematic review

Dora Yesenia Valencia, Magdiel Habila, D. Jean McClelland, Abraham Degarege, Purnima Madhivanan, Karl Krupp

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Introduction Owing to their propensity for being associated with infections, biofilms have become a focus in infectious disease research. There is evidence suggesting that statins, which are commonly used for prevention of cardiovascular disease, may prevent biofilm-associated infections, but this association has not been well-understood. Methods and analysis This systematic review protocol will include six database searches from their inception to 20 August 2020. A medical librarian will conduct the searches in PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, CINAHL, LILACS and CENTRAL, without any limits. Bibliographies of selected articles, previously published reviews and high-yield journals that publish on statins and/or biofilms will be searched to identify additional articles. The screening and data extraction will be conducted by two independent reviewers using DistillerSR. All included papers will also be evaluated for quality using Cochrane Risk of Bias Assessment tool, and we will examine for publication bias. If there are two or more studies with quantitative estimates that can be combined, we will conduct a meta-analysis after assessing for heterogeneity. We will report all findings according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Analyses-P framework. Ethics and dissemination There are conflicting results on the effect of statins on biofilm-associated infections. The rise of antibiotic resistance in medical settings warrants a deeper understanding of this association, especially if statins can be used as a novel antibiotic. The findings of this review will assess the association between statin use and biofilm-associated infection to inform future medical practice. No formal ethical review is required for this protocol. All findings will be published in a peer-reviewed journal. PROSPERO registration number CRD42020193985.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere046290
JournalBMJ open
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 25 2021


  • epidemiology
  • microbiology
  • public health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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