April 2020

Numerous animal species naturally produce chemical toxins that are used to kill or incapacitate prey or as a defense against predators.

Venomous animals deliver these toxins as venom through a bite, sting, or other specially evolved mechanisms.

Venoms have evolved to serve a wide variety of purposes.

Their intended effects can range from mild fleeting discomfort to paralysis and death, and they may be highly selective in which species they target, often making them harmless to all but a few specific co-evolved organisms.

What may be fatal to one species may be totally insignificant to another species.

antivenom administration

Antivenom, also known as antivenin, venom antiserum, and antivenom immunoglobulin, is a medication made from antibodies that are used to treat certain venomous bites and stings.

The specific antivenom needed depends on the species involved. It is given by injection.

Side effects may be severe. They include serum sickness, shortness of breath, and allergic reactions including anaphylaxis.

Antivenom is made by collecting venom from the relevant animal and injecting small amounts of it into a domestic animal.

The antibodies that form are then collected from the domestic animal’s blood and purified.

According to biologists, the term venomous is applied to organisms that bite (or sting) to inject their toxins, whereas the term poisonous applies to organisms that unload toxins when you eat them.

This means that very few snakes are truly poisonous. The vast majority of snake toxins are transferred by bite.

What are the 6 Differences between poison and venom?

The poison must be ingested, absorbed, or inhaled.

Venom has to enter the bloodstream through a bite or sting.

Poison in the animal kingdom is normally defensive, used by the prey for protection from predators.

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