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Cephalosporins are known as beta-lactam antibiotics because their chemical structure consist of a beta-lactam ring adjoined to a thiazolidine ring. They are usually classified in four major groups based on their spectrum of activity.

First generation→ Cefazolin, cefadroxil, cephalexin, cephapirin, cephradine The first generation are most active against gram(+) bacteria ( susceptible strains of S. aureus, S. epidermidis, Streptococcus pyogenes, S.agalactiae and S. pneumoniae) and a few gram(-) microbes (E. coli, Klebsiella, shigella and Proteus mirabilia)

Second generation→ Cefaclor, cefmetazole, cefonicid, cefotan, cefoxitin, cefuroxime, cefpodoxime, cefprozil