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Antibiotic for plague approved by the FDA

A plague outbreak could be extremely deadly, so much so that officials warn it can be used in a bioterror attack. Now U.S regulators have approved use of a powerful Johnson & Johnson antibiotic to treat and prevent the extremely rare but potentially deadly bacterial infection.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration also approved Levaquin, known generically as levofloxacin, to reduce risk of people getting plague after exposure to the bacteria that causes it, called Yersinia pestis.

Plague mainly occurs in animals. People can get it from bites from infected fleas or contact with infected animals or humans. About 1,000 to 2,000 human cases occur worldwide each year.

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