Clostridium botulinum infections are caused by clostridium botulinum, a gram-positive, rod-shaped bacterium which produces an extremely lethal substance that is botulism neurotoxin. The spread of clostridium botulinum in human body leads to life-threatening neuroparalysis and can be deadly. It blocks the motor nerve terminal at the myoneural junction and causes flaccid paralysis. There are three different forms of botulism that are as follows:
- Foodborne botulism: Foodborne botulism is caused by consuming food that is contaminated with botulinum toxin. For example, home-canned food or food kept in jars over extensive duration of time.
- Infant/intestinal botulism: This is the most common form of botulism which affects infants aged less than a year. It results from absorption of botulinum toxin that immediately multiply in the gut and produce toxins
- Wound botulism: When an open wound gets exposed to botulinum spores, the wound gets contaminated with botulinum spores, resulting in wound botulism
Various symptoms associated with clostridium botulinum infections are blurred vision, dilated pupils, nausea, difficulty in swallowing, extremely dry mouth, paralysis, constipation, and drooping eyelids.
Based on treatment of botulism, the clostridium botulinum infections market can be segmented as follows:
- Antitoxin Therapy: Antitoxins are antibodies that block the effects of botulism neurotoxin on the nervous system, i.e., nerves, brain and spinal cord. Another medication, known as botulism immunoglobulin is also used to treat infants.
- Meticulous airway management: Meticulous airway management is used as respiratory problems are the most common threat to patients affected with clostridium botulinum infections
- Mechanical breathing assistance: This treatment is a standard form of modern intensive care management in which the ventilator forces air into the patient’s lungs through a tube
- Cathartics: As constipations is the first sign of botulism in infants, cathartics are given to accelerate defecation
- Foley catheter: Foley catheter is used to treat bladder incontinence caused due to the infection. Special care must be taken to change the catheter regularly.
Based on geography, the clostridium botulinum infections market can be segmented into four major regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World. Out of these regions, North America holds a leading position in the market followed by Europe. The major factors which are driving the growth of clostridium botulinum infections market in these regions are increasing segment of the people who acquire clostridium botulinum infection, growing awareness about various toxic bacteria, and shift to sophisticated treatment tools. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the U.S., approximately 145 cases of clostridium botulinum infection are reported each year, of which 15% are foodborne, 65% are infant botulism and 20% are wound botulism. Asia Pacific is considered to be the most promising market for the growth of clostridium botulinum infections market followed by Europe. The factors which would propel the growth of the market in Asia Pacific are presence of large population density in countries such as China, India and Brazil, where there is high prevalence of bacterial diseases, favorable reimbursement scenario for treatments and medications, tax benefits and huge government support to set up healthcare infrastructures such as hospitals and research clinics.
Some of the top players operating in clostridium botulinum infections market are DynPort Vaccine Company LLC, Emergent BioSolutions, Inc., XOMA Ltd., AlphaVax, Inc., Cangene Corporation, Morphotek, Inc., Molecular Targeting Technologies, Inc. and many others.
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