Rifamycin derivatives

A drug may be classified by the chemical type of the active ingredient or by the way it is used to treat a particular condition. Each drug can be classified into one or more drug classes.

Rifamycin derivatives are antibiotics that work by binding to and inhibiting the mycobacterial DNA dependent RNA polymerase. These antibiotics are bacteriocidal and therefore extremely effective antituberculosis agents, but resistance can develop rapidly if used as a single agent. They easily penetrate into cells, body fluids and cerebrospinal fluid so can be used against organisms in the extracellular component and those that may be present in cells such as macrophages. Rifamycin antibiotics should be used throughout the course of tuberculosis treatment, which can be between nine months to a year.

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