Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A substance, such as penicillin or streptomycin, produced by or derived from certain fungi, bacteria, and other organisms, that can destroy or inhibit the growth of other microorganisms. Antibiotics are widely used in the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases.
  • adj. Of or relating to antibiotics.
  • adj. Of or relating to antibiosis.
  • adj. Destroying life or preventing the inception or continuance of life.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any substance that can destroy or inhibit the growth of bacteria and similar microorganisms.
  • adj. Of or relating to antibiotics.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. of or pertaining to an antibiotic.
  • adj. having antimicrobial activity; capable of killing microbes.
  • n. A chemical substance derived from a mold or bacterium that kills microorganisms and cures infections.
  • n. any chemical substance having therapeutically useful antibacterial or antifungal activity; -- used commonly but loosely for synthetic as well as natural antimicrobial agents.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Opposed to a belief in the presence or possibility of life.
  • In biology, injurious or deadly to the living substance: as, an antibiotic secretion.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a chemical substance derivable from a mold or bacterium that can kill microorganisms and cure bacterial infections
  • adj. of or relating to antibiotic drugs

Etymologies

From French antibiotique, coined in 1889 by P. Vuillemin from anti- and biotique, from Ancient Greek βιωτικός (biōtikós, "concerning or relating to life") (from βίος (bíos, "life"), from Proto-Indo-European *gʷeih₃w- (“to live”)), perhaps influenced by ἀντίϐιος (antíbios, "opposed") (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The company's news, better than the market expected, was overshadowed by Smithfield's part in another story: The Russian Federation banned imports of pork from more U.S. plants because of what it called antibiotic contamination.

    JournalStar.com - News Articles

  • Perhaps the most well known antibiotic is penicillin.

    Vaccine Science

  • When the antibiotic is found to have a fatal side effect, the company buries victims in a mass grave outside of town and kills others who know of the problem.

    Op-eds on vaccines by Paul Offit, MD

  • The damned antibiotic is making me ill, which always happens, and always surprises me, regardless.

    "persnal magnacism and sex repeal"

  • So my antibiotic is exposed until I can take it in the morning.

    My boyfriend is so stupid

  • The reason is that neither single nor double point mutations to the enzyme allowed it to destroy the certain antibiotic (called "imipenem").

    Behe's Test

  • The reason I am told and Lyme doctors concur, that long term antibiotic use should be considered when Lyme disease is suspected is because of the following:

    Michealene Cristini Risley: Lyme disease-where is "House" when you need him?

  • "They are commonly applied by insurance companies in restricting coverage for long-term antibiotic treatment or other medical care and also strongly influence physician treatment decisions."

    Michealene Cristini Risley: Lyme: Emerging Disease or Hidden Epidemic?

  • Ironically, the antibiotic is to prevent problems that might crop up during chemo.

    Archive 2007-08-19

  • In its summary of the investigation, the attorney general's office said insurance companies have relied on the 2006 guidelines to deny coverage for long-term antibiotic treatments.

    Medical Society Settles

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Comments

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  • Compare pronunciation of the second syllable here with that in antigen.

    December 1, 2010

  • I prefer -tee- for the second syllable of this word (and others beginning with the prefix anti-), and the evidence of my ears says this has been the dominant pronunciation in cultivated American speech for some time. The variant with short i as in fit (listen to the American Heritage Dictionary’s pronunciation) appears in older and some current dictionaries but is far from prevalent in American speech today. In fact, the Oxford Dictionary of Pronunciation (2003) says the short i is British and -tee- is American. The variant with a long i in the second syllable (like tie) appears in dictionaries but is an overpronunciation. (“Don’t bother with long i” in anti-, the orthoepist Alfred H. Holt advised in his 1937 guide You Don’t Say. “Just rhyme anti- with panty.”) Also avoid pronouncing the antepenultimate syllable -bi- like be; say it like by. — The Orthoepist

    December 1, 2010