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(Science: drug) a large class of antibiotics similar both chemically and in their mode of action to penicillins.

They are tetracyclic triterpene broad-spectrum antibiotics first isolated from the culture filtrates of mediterranean fungus acremonium (cephalosporium acremonium).

They contain the beta-lactam moiety thia-azabicyclo-octenecarboxylic acid also called 7-aminocephalosporanic acid and are effective against gram-positive bacteria.

Examples include: Keflex, Ceftin, Rocephin, Cefzil, Monocid, Keftab, Vantin, Ceclor, Duricef, Suprax and Cefobid.