- any of several antibiotics of low toxicity, produced naturally by molds of the genus Penicillium and also semisynthetically, having a bactericidal action on many susceptible Gram-positive or Gram-negative cocci and bacilli, some also being effective against certain spirochetes.
Origin of penicillin
Examples from the Web for penicillin
He liked to quote a psychiatrist who described MDMA as “penicillin for the soul.”The Week in Death: Alexander Shulgrin, Who Synthesized the Drug Ecstasy
June 7, 2014
The teenage schoolgirl died from an allergic reaction to penicillin last June during the botched operation.Egypt: Stop Mutilating Little Girls!
April 26, 2014
The pursuit of animal enhancement arose from studies made at the dawn of the penicillin era.Is Your Bacon on Drugs?
December 12, 2013
Unfortunately, Penicillin Envy can make it difficult to achieve those lesser innovations.
It strikes me that medical research is haunted by the memory of penicillin, and the other antibiotics that immediately followed.
It had words for electron, penicillin and calculus, for he found them in his own mind.The Sky Is Falling
Lester del Rey
Bags of fertilizer can be put on display, as can vials of penicillin, and jars of herbicide.
And in no time, penicillin was in mass production, saving untold thousands of lives.Bear Trap
Alan Edward Nourse
The effect of penicillin and certain sulfa drugs on the intracellular bacteroids of the cockroach.The Biotic Associations of Cockroaches
Louis M. Roth
So far, he'd been lucky with penicillin, but each time he used it with grave doubts of its action on the Mars-adapted patients.Badge of Infamy
Lester del Rey
- any of a group of antibiotics with powerful bactericidal action, used to treat many types of infections, including pneumonia, gonorrhoea, and infections caused by streptococci and staphylococci: originally obtained from the fungus Penicillium, esp P. notatum. Formula: R-C 9 H 11 N 2 O 4 S where R is one of several side chains
Word Origin and History for penicillin
1929, coined in English by Alexander Fleming (1881-1955), who first recognized its antibiotic properties, from Modern Latin Penicillium notatum (1867), the name of the mould from which it was first obtained, from Latin penicillus "paintbrush" (see pencil (n.)), in reference to the shape of the mould cells.
- Any of a group of broad-spectrum antibiotic drugs obtained from penicillium molds or produced synthetically, most active against gram-positive bacteria and used in the treatment of various infections and diseases.
- An antibiotic drug obtained from molds of the genus Penicillium and used to treat or prevent various infections caused by gram-positive bacteria such as streptococcus. Penicillin was the first of a class of antibiotics (whose names end in -icillin) that are derived from it and are active against a broader spectrum of bacteria. See Note at Alexander Fleming.