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April 21, 1906

THE TOXINS AND ANTITOXINS OF POISONOUS MUSHROOMS.

JAMA. 1906;XLVI(16):1209-1210. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.02510430059007
Abstract

The most important of the poisonous fungi is Amanita phalloides—"deadly amanita." A hundred years ago Bulliard, the great French mycologist, named it "destroying angel." Its abundance, its superficial resemblance to edible mushrooms, its delicious taste, and its extreme toxicity—a third of the top of a small plant has killed a 12-year-old child—fully justify these characterizations.

At present our therapeutic measures are of no avail in the treatment of severe cases, and consequently scientific studies of the toxicologic properties of toadstools may give results of practical value. The recent study by Ford1 of the poisons of the "deadly amanita" show (1) that they are of the nature of true toxins in that their action on the animal body becomes apparent after a period of latency or incubation; (2) they produce lesions similar to those of certain bacterial intoxications, and (3) they produce in animals on immunization specific antitoxins.

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