Most Wanted: Clostridium Botulinum

By: Brandon Brown

Description of Pathogenic Organism

Name: Clostridium Botulinum

Shape: Rod-Shaped

Gram Stain: Positive

Disease that Organism causes: Flaccid Paralysis

Organisms (MO)

How does the virus spread in "Clostridium Botulinum"?: Clostridium botulinum bacterium forms spores, which are small, usually single-celled reproductive bodies that are highly resistant to drought and heat and capable of growing into new organisms.

Symptoms of the Disease

Symptoms/How it makes you feel:

  • double vision
  • blurred vision
  • drooping eyelids
  • slurred speech
  • difficulty swallowing
  • dry mouth
  • muscle weakness
  • flaccid, symmetric, descending paralysis

Where is Clostridium Botulinum Found?


    Clostridium botulinum is found in soil and untreated water throughout the world. It produces spores that survive in improperly preserved or canned food, where they produce a toxin. When eaten, even tiny amounts of this toxin can lead to severe poisoning.


Who is Most Likely to be attacked?

Anyone who gets in contact w/ the bacteria.
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Most effective medicine?

If found early, botulism can be treated with an antitoxin that blocks circulation of the toxin in the bloodstream. This prevents the patient’s case from worsening, but recovery still takes several weeks.