Streptomycin, strong antibiotic acquired from a fungus that lives in soil. Streptomycin has the ability to hinder bacteria's protein-creating process. Its discovery in 1943 led to its widespread use to treat infectious diseases, such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, typhoid fever, and spinal meningitis. However, it was found that with continued use, streptomycin loses its effectiveness and some bacteria become resistant to it. Streptomycin today has been replaced by more powerful antibiotics.