Related topics: cells · bacteria · infectious diseases · bacterium

New test identifies poisonous mushrooms

A simple, portable test that can detect the deadliest of the mushroom poisons in minutes has been developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists and their colleagues.

Scientists zero in on endgame for nasty bacteria

Medications were once discovered by finding active ingredients in traditional remedies or by serendipitous discovery. A relatively new approach is to understand how disease and infection are controlled at the molecular level, ...

The heat is on for Australia's beloved marsupials

As Australia's weather heats up, it could have serious consequences for some of our country's most iconic animals, according to new research from The Australian National University (ANU).

Protein injections in medicine

Pathogens can use a range of toxins to damage their host organism. Bacteria, such as those responsible for causing the deadly Plague, use a special injection mechanism to deliver their poisonous contents into the host cell. ...

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Toxin

A toxin (Greek: τοξικόν, toxikon) is a poisonous substance produced by living cells or organisms. (Although technically man is a living organism, man-made substances created by artificial processes usually aren't considered toxins by this definition.)

For a toxic substance not produced by living organisms, "toxicant" is the more appropriate term, and "toxics" is an acceptable plural.

Toxins can be small molecules, peptides, or proteins that are capable of causing disease on contact with or absorption by body tissues interacting with biological macromolecules such as enzymes or cellular receptors. Toxins vary greatly in their severity, ranging from usually minor and acute (as in a bee sting) to almost immediately deadly (as in botulinum toxin).

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