Bacterial infections are the second leading cause of death worldwide, according to a paper published in the journal The Lancet. Bacterial pathogens were responsible for 7.7 million deaths worldwide in 2019, accounting for 13.6% of all deaths globally, making them the second leading cause of death after ischemic heart disease (including heart attack). The large-scale study examined deaths from 33 common bacterial pathogens and 11 infections in more than 200 countries. Five of the 33 bacterial species responsible for half of the deaths were Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the study noted. Staphylococcus aureus, a bacterium commonly found on human skin and nostrils, is behind a range of diseases, while E. coli commonly causes food poisoning. The research also shows that there are stark differences between poor and rich areas. Bacterial infections kill 230 per 100,000 people in sub-Saharan Africa. In high-income regions, including Western Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand, the figure dropped to 52 per 100,000 people.