First Documented: 1884
Illness Caused: Pneumonia, Flesh Eating Disease
Antibiotic Resistance: Medium
More commonly known as MRSA (which stands for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), this ‘superbug’ is very easily spread through human contact and can cause a range of illnesses from skin disorders to deadly diseases like meningitis and pneumonia. Most often treated with Penicillin type antibiotics, by 1960, 80 per cent of hospital samples were antibiotic resistant. A concerted effort in tracking the disease and improving hygiene measures in hospitals has seen cases of MRSA fall by 84.7 per cent in the UK between 2003 and 2011, proving that prevention is often the best form of defence against bacteria.