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[exo- + toxin]
A toxin produced and released by bacteria, e.g., staphylococci, streptococci, Vibrio cholerae, Pseudomonas spp, and Escherichia coli. The actions of specific exotoxins vary with the organism. Staphylococcal exotoxins stimulate release of gamma interferon and can cause systemic inflammatory response syndrome. Inactivated exotoxins are used as the basis for diphtheria and tetanus vaccines.
SEE: bacterium; SEE: endotoxin; SEE: sepsis; SEE: systemic inflammatory response syndrome; SEE: toxoid

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