Accession Number:

ADA501673

Title:

Mechanism of Action of Botulinum Neurotoxin and Overview of Medical Countermeasures for Intoxication

Descriptive Note:

Book chapter

Corporate Author:

ARMY MEDICAL RESEARCH INST OF CHEMICAL DEFENSE ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD

Report Date:

2008-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

37.0

Abstract:

The botulinum neurotoxins BoNTs comprise a family of seven distinct neurotoxic proteins A-G produced by immunologically discrete strains of the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium botulinum and in rare cases by Clostridium baratii and Clostridium butyricum Habermann and Dreyer, 1986 Harvey et al., 2002 Simpson, 2004. These toxins act on peripheral cholinergic synapses to inhibit spontaneous and impulse-dependent release of acetylcholine ACh Brooks, 1956 Kao et al., 1976. Intoxication by BoNT results in muscle weakness, which can be fatal when the diaphragm and intercostal muscles become sufficiently compromised to impair ventilation Dickson and Shevky, 1923. The BoNTs are the most potent substances in nature, and exposure to as little as 1-3 ngkg may be sufficient to cause human lethality Gill, 1982 Middlebrook and Franz, 1997 Arnon et al., 2001. The purpose of this chapter is to use the insights gained in our understanding of the mechanism of BoNT action to establish a conceptual framework within which to develop effective treatment strategies for intoxication. The chapter is organized into three major topics l an overview of BoNT action, 2 a description of the manifestations of botulism, and 3 an evaluation of conventional and emergent treatment options.

Subject Categories:

  • Microbiology

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE