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For the first time in 30 years, a new type of antibiotic has been unearthed, buried in dirt. Experiments suggest the antibiotic family, known as malacidins, can kill several 'superbugs', including the notoriously difficult-to-treat methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The antibiotics' unique approach to killing pathogens targets bacteria's cell walls, which did not cause drug resistance in the laboratory, a US study found. When tested on MRSA skin infections in rats, the rodents experienced no side effects, giving the researchers hope they may have discovered a non-toxic alternative to current antibiotics. Experts have previously warned antibiotic resistance poses 'as big a... Full story

13 February