Any of a class of broad-spectrum, relatively penicillinase-resistant, ®-lactam antimicrobial drugs originally derived from species of the fungus Acremonium (formerly called Cephalosporium). Italian scientist Giuseppe Brotzu first isolated the parent compound cephalosporin C from a sewer in Sardinia in 1948. Cephalosporins available for medical use today are semisynthetic derivatives of this natural antimicrobial compound.
Sources: Dorland's illustrated medical dictionary. 30th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders; 2003. and Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary. 11th ed. Springfield (MA): Merriam-Webster's, Inc; 2003.