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Scientists find bacteria resistant to last-ditch drug treatments

If there wasn’t already a reason to develop a solution to drug-resistant “superbugs,” there is now. Scientists have found bacteria on an American pig farm that resists carbapenems, a variety of antibiotics used only against germs that resist normal antibiotics. There was a similar incident with cattle earlier in 2016, but that bacteria couldn’t transmit its resistance to anything but its offspring — this strain could jump between bacteria without much trouble.

Thankfully, the scientists didn’t find evidence of the bacteria reaching the pigs or their food supply. And while the bacteria would pose a threat to people who are already sick, it’s not normally dangerous to humans. That’s not exactly reassuring in the long term, though, and the team tells Popular Science that it wants to find methods of preventing this sort of contamination in the future. The group is also worried about the resistant bacteria’s origins. It’s unlikely that the resistance developed at the farm given the lack of antibiotics, so there’s a good chance that it came from something outside.

Plenty of research is underway to develop both more sophisticated antibiotics and treatments that avoid antibiotics altogether. However, this discovery reinforces the need for short-term steps to prevent particularly stubborn bacteria from spreading, such as better procedures and preventative technology. Ideally, the medical community would buy enough time to have a true answer to superbugs before the best available options prove ineffective.

Via: Popular Science

Source: American Society for Microbiology

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Ms. A. C. Kennedy
My name is Ms A C Kennedy and I am a Health practitioner and Consultant by day and a serial blogger by night. I luv family, life and learning new things. I especially luv learning how to improve my business. I also luv helping and sharing my information with others. Don't forget to ask me anything!

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There's a good reason why security analysts get nervous about bundled third-party software: it can introduce vulnerabilities that the companies can't control. And Microsoft, unfortunately, has learned that the hard way. Google researcher Tavis Ormandy discovered that a Windows 10 image came bundled with a third-party password manager, Keeper, which came with a glaring browser plugin flaw -- a malicious website could steal passwords. Ormandy's copy was an MSDN image meant for developers, but Reddit users noted that they received the vulnerable copy of Keeper after clean reinstalls of regular copies and even a brand new laptop.

A Microsoft spokesperson told Ars Technica that the Keeper team had patched the exploit (in response to Ormandy's private disclosure), so it shouldn't be an issue if your software is up to date. Also, you were only exposed if you enabled the plugin.

However, the very existence of the hole has still raised a concern: are Microsoft's security tests as thorough for third-party apps as its own software? The company has declined to comment, but that kind of screening may prove crucial if Microsoft is going to maintain the trust of Windows users. It doesn't matter how secure Microsoft's code is if a bundled app undermines everything.

Source: Monorail, Tavis Ormandy (Twitter)