Tuberculosis was first identified in Ancient Greece. The tubercle germ attacks the whole body but usually settles in the lungs. Tuberculosis causes a breaking down of the normal lung tissue and in the 19th century was responsible for about 25 per cent of all deaths in Britain. At that time it was generally known as consumption. The cause of the disease was discovered in 1882 and this enabled a vaccine to be developed. If a person does catch tuberculosis today it can usually be treated successfully with antibiotics.