Grey-market medicines: Diphtheria antitoxin and the decay of biomedical infrastructure
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More so than most of its European neighbours, Spain at the turn of the 21st century thought it had relegated diphtheria to the past: the country had not seen a case of diphtheria since 1986. Not, that is, until a 6-year old boy was diagnosed with the disease in May, 2015. Although diphtheria has been a curable disease since the development of diphtheria antitoxin (DAT) in the 1890s and its widespread manufacture in the early 20th century, scarcely a month after his diagnosis, the child succumbed to this disease thought to have been largely tamed by modern medical science.
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Vol. 389 (10080), pp. 1690–1691