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Septic shock due to release of endotoxins by gram-negative bacteria. Endotoxins are lipopolysaccharides in the cell walls that are released during both reproduction and destruction of the bacteria. They are potent stimulators of inflammation, activating macrophages, B lymphocytes, and cytokines and producing vasodilation, increased capillary permeability, and activation of the complement and coagulation cascades. See: endotoxin; septic shock
See also: shock
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