Botulism is a severe paralytic disease caused by the most potent of all natural toxins, according to lethality assays in animals. The appellation “botulism” is derived from the Latin botulus, in reference to the improperly prepared blood sausages that were implicated in causing the disease in the late 18th century. The putative agent is Clostridium botulinum, first isolated during an investigation of food poisoning involving 23 members of a music club in Belgium who had consumed contaminated raw salted ham.1 The organism is phenotypically identical to C. sporogenes but is unique in its production of seven serologically distinct protein.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Medicine