The Pros And Cons Of Botulinum Toxin

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Botulism is a rare but serious paralytic illness caused by a nerve toxin mainly produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum.1 It is not a contagious disease, however the bacteria can enter the body through inhalation, ingestion or through a wound. Botulinum toxin produced by Clostridium botulinum is claimed to be one of the most poisonous substance to human as an estimation of one million people can be killed by using only one gram of crystallized Botulinum toxin.2 It has an effect on human nervous system which then lead to a gradual paralysis that spread from head to whole body, eventually causing a fatal respiratory failure if not treated promptly. Even though botulinum toxin is the first biological toxin that had been licensed for human disease treatment, it is still considered as a threatening biological warfare agent by the experts due to its characteristics of highly lethal in minute amount, easy to manufacture and…show more content…
However, due to the available extensive knowledge of botulism, it is possible that Botulinum toxin of a higher stability could be engineered in the future. 6 Development of new technologies such as genetic engineering and easy access to information are always the two important factors that contribute to the misuse of biological warfare agents. Through these knowledge and information, virulence and potency of the agent can be further improved to make an efficient bioweapons.7 Unfortunately, a development of antibiotic-resistant microorganism can take place due to such misuse and development of newer strains, which then lead to increased invasiveness and pathogenicity of commensals. This causes an enhanced resistance to potent and new antibiotics, which eventually lead to failure of drugs to protect the population against lethal

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