Definition of macrolide in US English:



  • Any of a class of antibiotics containing a lactone ring, of which the first and best known is erythromycin.

    • ‘Methylation does not affect the function of the adenine residue other than to help the organism become less susceptible to the macrolide class of antibiotics.’
    • ‘As with other currently available fluoroquinolone and macrolide antibiotics, QTc interval prolongation has been linked to the use of telithromycin.’
    • ‘Trials investigating the role of macrolide antibiotic therapy in patients with acute coronary syndromes are inconclusive.’
    • ‘Oral antibiotic therapy with macrolides and cephalosporines for presumed pneumonia was started, with a favorable response after 5 days of therapy.’
    • ‘If antibiotics are required, one that is active against gram-positive organisms such as penicillinase-resistant penicillins, cephalosporins, macrolides, or fluoroquinolones should be chosen.’


1950s: from macro- + l(actone) + -ide.