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Penicillin's first patient

The discovery of penicillin by Alexander Fleming in 1928 is often portrayed as a stroke of serendipity falling upon a sloppy worker who had left a bacterial culture plate open on his bench while taking a holiday. The fungus ...

Pediatrics

Is your child's 'penicillin allergy' real?

(HealthDay)—Many children suspected of being allergic to the inexpensive, first-line antibiotic penicillin actually aren't, new research indicates.

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Penicillin

Penicillin (sometimes abbreviated PCN or pen) is a group of antibiotics derived from Penicillium fungi. Penicillin antibiotics are historically significant because they were the first drugs that were effective against many previously serious diseases such as syphilis and Staphylococcus infections. Penicillins are still widely used today, though many types of bacteria are now resistant. All penicillins are Beta-lactam antibiotics and are used in the treatment of bacterial infections caused by susceptible, usually Gram-positive, organisms.

The term "penicillin" can also refer to the mixture of substances that are naturally produced.

The term "penam" is used to describe the core skeleton of a member of a penicillin antibiotic. This skeleton has the molecular formula R-C9H11N2O4S, where R is a variable side chain.

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