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January 4, 1980

Bacterial Endotoxin (Lipopolysaccharide) as a Cause of Erythema Multiforme

JAMA. 1980;243(1):58-60. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03300270046029

The classic iris lesions in a patient with erythema multiforme bullosum were reproduced grossly as well as microscopically by the intradermal injection of a variety of heat-killed, Gram-negative bacteria, as well as their common endotoxin, lipopolysaccharide W. In vitro exposure of the patient's blood to these antigens induced specific fibrin microclots characteristic of a hypersensitivity state. It is possible that some cases of erythema multiforme associated with a variety of respiratory, gastrointestinal, or urinary tract infections may represent a single specific delayed sensitivity reaction to the bacterial endotoxin, lipopolysaccharide.

(JAMA 243:58-60, 1980)