Healer or poison?

Botulinum toxin Type A, best known by the trade name Botox, is used in cosmetic procedures and also to treat medical ailments such as muscle spasms and migraines. But the active ingredient is a toxin so lethal that governments have explored its use as a biological weapon. Law enforcement officials worry that the black market for botulinum toxin could provide raw materials for a terrorist attack.


© 2010 The Washington Post Company