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New antibiotic-resistant bacteria found in cow’s milk

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As if the E. coli outbreak in Europe wasn’t frightening enough, British scientists have now announced the discovery a new strain of a dangerous antibiotic-resistant bacteria that infects both humans and cows.

In a report being published online Friday in the journal The Lancet Infectious Diseases, researchers said they stumbled across the new strain of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) while studying udder infections in cows on British farms.

MRSA is a strain of the ubiquitous bacterium that usually causes staph infections that are easily treated with common antibiotics in the penicillin family, such as methicillin. Strains of the organism, however, that are impervious to such first-line antibiotics have been increasingly turning up in hospitals and in small outbreaks outside of heath-care settings, such as among athletes, prison inmates and children.

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