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Corynebacterium diphtheriae

 

Definition: a bacterial species that causes diphtheria and produces a powerful exotoxin causing degeneration of various tissues, notably myocardium, in humans and experimental animals, and catalyzing the ADP-ribosylation of elongation factor II; virulent strains of this organism are lysogenic; it is commonly found in membranes in the pharynx, larynx, trachea, and nose in cases of diphtheria; it is also found in apparently healthy pharynx and nose in carriers, and occasionally in the conjunctiva and in superficial wounds; it occasionally infects the nasal passages and wounds of horses; it is the type species of the genus Corynebacterium.

Synonym(s): Klebs-Loeffler bacillus, Loeffler bacillus

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© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.
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