(Nature) – A new antibiotic was right under our noses — or rather, in them. Produced by a bacterium living in the human nose, the molecule kills the potentially deadly methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in mice and rats. Staphylococcus aureus resides in the noses of 1 in 3 people without causing a problem. MRSA — an S. aureus strain resistant to many antibiotics — is found in 2 in 100. In a small percentage of cases, the bacterium escapes to the bloodstream, causing infection. MRSA kills 11,000 people annually in the United States alone.
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