Comparison of two toxins produced by Clostridium difficile

N. S. Taylor, G. M. Thorne, J. G. Bartlett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

181 Scopus citations


Clostridium difficile was shown to produce A toxin which could be biochemically separated from the previously described cytotoxin of the same organism. The two proteins differ in biological activity and physical properties. Antiserum prepared to the second toxin does not neutralize the biological activity of the cytotoxin, and immunological cross-reactivity could not be demonstrated. However, some relationship may exist between the two toxins, since the newly described toxin degrades on polyacrylamide electrophoresis into two molecules, one of which appears to migrate with the band of purified cytotoxin. We suggest that this newly described toxin be designated toxin A until its primary biological activity and physical relationship to cytotoxin is determined. This toxin is active in biological assays of enteric disease and may play an important role in C. difficile-induced colitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1036-1043
Number of pages8
JournalInfection and immunity
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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