A broad spectrum antibiotic (a naphthacene derivative), the parent of oxytetracycline, prepared from chlortetracycline and also obtained from the culture filtrate of several species of Streptomyces; also available as t. hydrochloride and t. phosphate complex. T. fluorescence has been used in studies of growing tumors and calcium deposition in developing bone and teeth.

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tet·ra·cy·cline .te-trə-'sī-.klēn, -klən n 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)

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1. one of a group of antibiotic compounds derived from cultures of Streptomyces bacteria. These drugs, which include chlortetracycline, doxycycline, oxytetracycline, and tetracycline, are effective against a wide range of bacterial infections. They are usually given by mouth to treat various conditions, including respiratory-tract infections, syphilis, and acne. Side-effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea are fairly common. In addition, suppression of normal intestinal bacteria may make the patient susceptible to infection with tetracycline-resistant organisms. Tetracyclines should not be administered after the fourth month of pregnancy and their use should be avoided in young children to prevent unsightly staining of the permanent teeth.
2. a particular antibiotic of the tetracycline group. Trade name: Achromycin.

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tet·ra·cy·cline (tet″rə-siґklēn) 1. [USP] a semisynthetic broad-spectrum antibiotic produced from chlortetracycline; administered orally. 2. any of a group of related broad-spectrum antibiotics; some are isolated from certain species of Streptomyces and others are produced semisynthetically. The group includes chlortetracycline, demeclocycline, doxycycline, methacycline, minocycline, oxytetracycline, and rolitetracycline. Tetracyclines are effective against a wide range of aerobic and anaerobic gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, and are used particularly for rickettsiae, mycoplasmas, and chlamydiae; they are also effective against certain protozoa.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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  • tetracycline — 1952, with chemical suffix INE (Cf. ine) (2) + tetracyclic “containing four fused hydrocarbon rings,” from TETRA (Cf. tetra ) + cyclic (see CYCLE (Cf. cycle) (n.)) …   Etymology dictionary

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