kana·​my·​cin ˌka-nə-ˈmī-sᵊn How to pronounce kanamycin (audio)
: a broad-spectrum antibiotic from a Japanese soil streptomyces (Streptomyces kanamyceticus)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Adding the antibiotic kanamycin led to a dramatic decline in growth rate, providing an opportunity to quantify the kinetics of drug effectiveness. Jeffrey Marlow, Discover Magazine, 12 Oct. 2016 Note:To be specific, XDR-TB is resistant to the two first-line drugs, isoniazid and rifampin, used to treat TB initially, plus any fluoroquinolone and at least one of three injectable second-line drugs (i.e., amikacin, kanamycin, or capreomycin). Rebecca Kreston, Discover Magazine, 7 Mar. 2013 Her treatment now involved 13 different medications, including injections of kanamycin, which can cause permanent hearing loss and kidney impairment. Sofia Moutinho, Scientific American, 14 May 2022 High frequency of resistance to tetracycline, erythromycin, streptomycin, kanamycin, and ciprofloxacin in our study likely reflects use of tetracyclines, macrolides, aminoglycosides and fluoroquinolones as feed additives for swine in the USA… Maryn Mckenna, WIRED, 28 Jan. 2011

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'kanamycin.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


New Latin kanamyceticus, specific epithet of Streptomyces kanamyceticus

First Known Use

1957, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of kanamycin was in 1957

Dictionary Entries Near kanamycin

Cite this Entry

“Kanamycin.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/kanamycin. Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

Medical Definition


kana·​my·​cin ˌkan-ə-ˈmīs-ᵊn How to pronounce kanamycin (audio)
: a broad-spectrum antibiotic from a Japanese soil bacterium of the genus Streptomyces (S. kanamyceticus)
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