The other Amanita toxin

When a hospital patient with acute renal failure brings along a sample of the mushroom soup that poisoned him, how do you identify the specific toxin?

08 / 29 / 2020 | Daniel Holmes

A patient thought he was eating pine mushrooms. When he showed up at the hospital with acute renal failure, Dr. Daniel Holmes and colleagues accepted the challenge of finding out exactly which mushroom toxin was responsible. They ended up developing a quantitative MS urine assay that could help with diagnosing future cases.

“There was a mycologist in Austria named Martin Kirchmair, and he had a thin layer chromatographic method for the allenic norleucine toxin, and so … we FedExed him some mushroom soup.”

Daniel Holmes