putrefaction is a topic covered in the Taber's Medical Dictionary.

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(pū″trĕ-făk′shŭn )

[L. putrefactio]
Decomposition of animal matter, esp. protein associated with malodorous and poisonous products such as the ptomaines, mercaptans, and hydrogen sulfide, caused by certain kinds of bacteria and fungi. Decomposition that occurs in previously sterile tissue after death (carried out by normal flora) is called autolysis.
SEE: sepsis

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