Definition of tetracycline
: a yellow crystalline broad-spectrum antibiotic C22H24N2O8 produced by streptomyces or synthetically; also : any of several chemically related antibiotics (such as doxycycline)
Did You Know?
Most chemical names are made up of two or more Greek and Latin roots strung together. Thus, tetracycline, with its cycl- root from the Greek word for "circle", means "four-ringed"—that is, "consisting of four fused hydrocarbon rings". Antibiotics work against bacteria and other tiny organisms (but not viruses); tetracycline, which comes from a kind of soil bacteria, is one of the most used of the antibiotics. "Broad-spectrum" antibiotics work well on numerous organisms; thus, tetracycline has proved effective against acne, chlamydia, cholera, rickets, and various lung and eye infections, among many other conditions.
Origin and Etymology of tetracycline
International Scientific Vocabulary tetracyclic having four fused hydrocarbon rings + 2-ine
First Known Use: 1952
Medical Definition of tetracycline
: a yellow crystalline broad-spectrum antibiotic that is produced by a soil actinomycete of the genus Streptomyces (S. viridifaciens) or made synthetically and that is administered chiefly in the form of its hydrochloride C22H24N2O8·HCl; also : any of several chemically related antibiotics (as doxycycline)
Learn More about tetracycline
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about tetracycline
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