Stands for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, although it is often more conveniently termed 'Multiply resistant ~'. A throat bacterium that has become resistant (through horizonatal gene transfer) to many common antibiotics and can only be treated with 'last resort' drugs like vancomycin. Has only been found in hospitals, where a population of bacteria with various resistances reside. However, it raises the possibility that epidemics of resistant microbes could be as difficult to stop as the days before antibiotics.

See : overuse of antibiotics