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Earache microbe shows resistance

A microbe that causes middle ear infections has developed resistance to a wide range of antibiotics, a new study finds.

The offender is a strain of Streptococcus pneumoniae, a bacterium best known for causing pneumonia. However, the microbe can also trigger middle ear infections, meningitis, sinus infections, and various respiratory ailments.

Immunization with a vaccine called pneumococcal 7-valent conjugate prevents infection by the seven most common strains of S. pneumoniae. But in recent years, physicians have encountered strains of S. pneumoniae not covered by the vaccine that have become impervious to some antibiotics.

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