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Aztreonam. (The square is the β-lactam. There is a second thiazole ring, but it is not fused to the β-lactam ring.)

Monobactams are β-lactam compounds wherein the β-lactam ring is alone and not fused to another ring (in contrast to most other β-lactams, which have at least two rings). They work only against aerobic Gram negative bacteria (e.g., Neisseria, Pseudomonas ).

The only commercially available monobactam antibiotic is aztreonam.

Other examples of monobactams are tigemonam,[1] nocardicin A, and tabtoxin.

Adverse effects to monobactams can include skin rash and occasional abnormal liver functions.

They have no cross-hypersensitivity reactions with penicillin but like penicillins can trigger seizures in patients with history of seizures.


  1. ^ Fuchs PC, Jones RN, Barry AL (March 1988). "In vitro antimicrobial activity of tigemonam, a new orally administered monobactam". Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 32 (3): 346–9. doi:10.1128/aac.32.3.346. PMC 172173. PMID 3259122. 

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