Bacterial infections are the second leading cause of death worldwide, according to a new study. They were responsible for one in eight deaths in 2019—before the outbreak of the corona pandemic—according to research published in the journal “The Lancet.” Overall, pathogens were associated with 7.7 million deaths – 13.6 percent of the global total.

Only five bacteria were responsible for half of the deaths: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Bacterial infections were the second leading cause of death after ischemic heart disease, which includes heart attacks. Ischemia is the reduction or absence of blood flow to the tissues.

To reduce bacterial deaths, scientists have called for more investment in new vaccines, among other things. They also opposed the “unjustified use of antibiotics” to prevent antibiotic resistance.