In order to exert its action, metronidazole is converted inside the cell by the bacterial enzyme nitroreductase. In its activated form, metronidazole disrupts the helical structure of the bacterial DNA, which leads to defragmentation of the genetic material.


Metronidazole is the drug of choice for treatment of anaerobic infection and the protozoan infections of giardiasis and amebiasis.

The most common side effects of metronidazole include headache, nausea, dry mouth, neuropathy and metallic taste.


Metronidazole inhibits DNA gyrase. 


Infections caused by Chlamydia species are covered by metronidazole. 


Metronidazole is poorly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract, and therefore has to be given parenterally.