The anaerobe Vibrion septique produces a specific toxin that causes striking effects when inoculated intravenously into laboratory animals. This toxin is unusual in the rapidity of its action, especially on rabbits. A recent study of the gross and microscopic changes produced by the toxin in animals has been reported by Pasternack and Bengtson.1 The animals used were rabbits, mice, guinea-pigs and pigeons; the results of the studies on these animals disclose certain facts that appear important in understanding the pathologic physiology of fatal human "gas" gangrene due to this organism.
The toxin of Vibrion septique has powerful cardiotoxic properties if not even a special affinity for the heart. This organ in almost all animals that survive any length of time shows lesions of some character. Intense capillary engorgement, conglutination and fusion of the red blood cells and occasionally hyaline thrombi are commonly noted. Scattered focal interstitial hemorrhages and some