The aim of this study was to compare the antibacterial activity of teicoplanin and vancomycin in the treatment of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) meningitis using a rabbit meningitis model. The MRSA strain ATCC 43300 was used to infect the rabbits. The vancomycin group received 20 mg/kg vancomycin every 12 h (q12h), the teicoplanin group received 6 mg/kg teicoplanin q12h and the control group did not receive any treatment. Drug levels were measured using a bioassay technique. Bacterial counts in the treatment groups were significantly lower (P < 0.05) than those of the control group at 12 h and 24 h after treatment. When the treatment groups were compared, the bacterial counts after 12 h or 24 h of treatment were similar (P > 0.05). These data suggest that the antibacterial activity of vancomycin and teicoplanin are similar in experimental MRSA meningitis of rabbits. (C) 2005 Elsevier B.V. and the International Society of Chemotherapy. All rights reserved.