Agent, anti-infective: An agent that is capable of acting against infection, either by inhibiting the spread of an infectious agent or by killing the infectious agent outright.
- Agent, antibiotic
Agent, antibiotic: A drug used to treat bacterial infections. The original definition of an antibiotic was a substance produced by one microorganism that selectively inhibits the growth of another microorganism. However, wholly synthetic antibiotics (usually chemically related to natural antibiotics) have since been produced that accomplish comparable tasks. In 1926, Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin, a […]
- Agent, antifungal
Agent, antifungal: A drug used to treat fungal infections. Examples of antifungal drugs include miconazole (MONISTAT) and clotrimazole (LOTRIMIN, MYCELEX).
- Agent, antihypertensive
Agent, antihypertensive: As the name suggests, a drug aimed at reducing high blood pressure (hypertension).
- Agent, antiprotozoal
Agent, antiprotozoal: An agent that destroys protozoa or inhibits their growth and ability to reproduce. A few of the protozoa of medical importance include Plasmodium (the cause of malaria); Entamoeba histolytica (the cause of amebiasis, amebic dysentery) and Trichomonas vaginalis (a cause of vaginal infection); and Pneumocystis carinii (a common cause of pneumonia [PCP] in […]
- Agent, antiviral
Agent, antiviral: An agent that kills viruses or suppresses their replication and, hence, inhibits their capability to multiply and reproduce. For example, amantadine (Symmetrel) is a synthetic (man-made) drug that inhibits the multiplication of the influenza A virus and was once used to prevent the flu. Safer medicines such as oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza) […]