China confirms first swine fever cases in Beijing

China's agriculture ministry on Friday confirmed the first cases of African swine fever in Beijing, a disease that has spread across the country despite efforts to contain it.

Toxin in centipede venom identified

A team of researchers from several institutions in China has identified the toxin in golden head centipede venom. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes how they found ...

Empowered citizens or hopeful bystanders?

The new political appetite for 'localism' in town planning has triggered anxiety within local communities and amongst those charged with making it work, according to new research funded by the Economic and Social Research ...

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Antidote

An antidote is a substance which can counteract a form of poisoning. The term ultimately derives from the Greek αντιδιδοναι antididonai, "given against".

The antidotes for some particular toxins are manufactured by injecting the toxin into an animal in small doses and extracting the resulting antibodies from the host animals' blood. This results in an antivenom that can be used to counteract poison produced by certain species of snakes, spiders, and other venomous animals. A number of venoms lack a viable antivenom, and a bite or sting from an animal producing such a toxin often results in death. Some animal venoms, especially those produced by arthropods (e.g. certain spiders, scorpions, bees, etc.) are only potentially lethal when they provoke allergic reactions and induce anaphylactic shock; as such, there is no "antidote" for these venoms because it is not a form of poisoning, though anaphylactic shock can be treated (e.g., by the use of epinephrine).

Some other toxins have no known antidote. For example, the poison ricin, which is produced from the waste byproduct of castor oil manufacture, has no antidote, and as a result is often fatal if it enters the human body in sufficient quantities.

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