Diphtheria antitoxin

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Diphtheria antitoxin
Clinical data
Routes of
Defined daily dosenot established[1]
External links
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Diphtheria antitoxin (DAT) is a medication made up of antibodies used in the treatment of diphtheria.[2][3] It is no longer recommended for prevention of diphtheria.[3][4] It is given by injection into a vein or muscle.[3]

Side effects are common.[4] They include serum sickness and allergic reactions including anaphylaxis.[3] Diphtheria antitoxin is made from the blood plasma of horses that have been immunized against diphtheria toxin.[2] It works by neutralizing the toxins produced by Corynebacterium diphtheriae.[2]

Diphtheria antitoxin was developed and came into medical use in the late 1800s.[5] It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines.[6] In the United States it can be obtained from the Center for Disease Control.[2] It is not available in many countries including many in Europe as of 2008.[7]


It is a solution of concentrated proteins, chiefly globulins, containing antibodies obtained from the blood of horses that have been immunized against diphtheria toxin.[2]

Medical uses


The defined daily dose is not established.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "WHOCC - ATC/DDD Index". www.whocc.no. Archived from the original on 24 September 2020. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 "Our Formulary | Infectious Diseases Laboratories | CDC". www.cdc.gov. 22 September 2016. Archived from the original on 16 December 2016. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 World Health Organization (2009). Stuart MC, Kouimtzi M, Hill SR (eds.). WHO Model Formulary 2008. World Health Organization. p. 397. hdl:10665/44053. ISBN 9789241547659.
  4. 4.0 4.1 British national formulary : BNF 69 (69 ed.). British Medical Association. 2015. p. 850. ISBN 9780857111562.
  5. Hau, Jann; Schapiro, Steven J.; Jr, Gerald L. Van Hoosier (2004). Handbook of Laboratory Animal Science, Second Edition: Animal Models. CRC Press. p. 6. ISBN 9781420039627. Archived from the original on 2017-09-23.
  6. World Health Organization (2019). World Health Organization model list of essential medicines: 21st list 2019. Geneva: World Health Organization. hdl:10665/325771. WHO/MVP/EMP/IAU/2019.06. License: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
  7. Wagner, KS; Stickings, P; White, JM; Neal, S; Crowcroft, NS; Sesardic, D; Efstratiou, A (10 December 2009). "A review of the international issues surrounding the availability and demand for diphtheria antitoxin for therapeutic use". Vaccine. 28 (1): 14–20. doi:10.1016/j.vaccine.2009.09.094. PMID 19818425.

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