A superbug has been sent by NASA to space in a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

The bug is an antibiotic-resistant superbug that has been sent from Kennedy Space Center to the International Space Station (ISS).

Astronauts at the space station will study the bug at the ISS, which is host to numerous experiments on a daily basis.

Researchers hope to better understand how superbugs mutate to become resistant to available antibiotics, by studying them in a zero-gravity environment.  

Staph (also known as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA) is resistant to a few antibiotics including methicillin. A number of problems can be caused by the bug including pneumonia and skin and bloodstream infections.

The results from NASA's first twins study have also been released:

"We are excited to put MRSA on the International Space Station and investigate the effects of microgravity on the growth and mutation patterns of these bugs," said lead researcher Dr Anita Goel Goel at a NASA news conference last week.

"I have this hypothesis that microgravity will accelerate the mutation patterns. If we can use microgravity as an accelerator to fast-forward and get a sneak preview of what these mutations will look like, then we can essentially build smarter drugs on Earth," she said.

This is not the first time that the zero-gravity or microgravity environment has been used to host research on bacteria.

DNA was sequenced for the first time aboard the station in 2016.