gen·​ta·​mi·​cin ˌjen-tə-ˈmī-sᵊn How to pronounce gentamicin (audio)
: a broad-spectrum antibiotic mixture derived from an actinomycete (Micromonospora purpurea or M. echinospora) and extensively used as the sulfate in treating infections (as of the urinary tract)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Both can be treated with gentamicin, one of a larger group of antibiotics called aminoglycosides. Valerie Ross, Discover Magazine, 13 May 2011 The researchers combined gentamicin with different kinds of sugars, including mannitol, fructose and glucose. Valerie Ross, Discover Magazine, 13 May 2011 But a Henry Ford Health System study found that cleaning catheters with an antibiotic combination of gentamicin and citrate, instead of heparin, lowered mortality rates a whopping 68 percent. Lacy Schley, Discover Magazine, 22 Jan. 2015 Those who are currently or were previously sick with monkeypox, or people who have had an allergic reaction to gentamicin, ciprofloxacin, or egg protein, should not get the vaccine. Gretchen Cuda Kroen, cleveland, 15 Sep. 2022 Instead, antibiotics commonly used in flu vaccine manufacturing include neomycin, kanamycin, polymyxin B and gentamicin. Anne P. Kim, The Conversation, 13 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gentamicin.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


alteration of earlier gentamycin, from gentian violet + kanamycin; from the color of the actinomycete

First Known Use

1963, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of gentamicin was in 1963

Dictionary Entries Near gentamicin

Cite this Entry

“Gentamicin.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Mar. 2023.

Medical Definition


gen·​ta·​mi·​cin ˌjent-ə-ˈmīs-ᵊn How to pronounce gentamicin (audio)
: a broad-spectrum aminoglycoside antibiotic mixture that is derived from two actinomycetes of the genus Micromonospora (M. purpurea and M. echinospora) and is extensively used in the form of the sulfate in treating infections especially of the urinary tract

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