Staphylococcus aureus is notorious for its ability to become resistant to antibiotics. Infections caused by antibiotic-resistant strains often occur in epidemic waves initiated by one or a few successful clones. Methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) is prominently featured during these epidemics.
Also, when did MRSA become resistant to penicillin?
Modern strains of MRSA did not, however, show up out of the blue. In the early 1940s, when penicillin was first used to treat bacterial infections, penicillin-resistant strains of S. aureus were unknown — but by the 1950s, they were common in hospitals.
Can MRSA be treated with penicillin?
Although MRSA cannot be effectively treated with antibiotics such as methicillin, nafcillin, cephalosporin or penicillin, it can usually be treated with an antibiotic called vancomycin. Recently, however, a few strains of Staphylococcus aureus have even developed some degree of resistance to vancomycin.