TIL most of the world’s Botox is manufactured in Ireland. A couple of pounds/kilos of the raw botulinum neurotoxin used to make it is enough to kill everyone in the world, multiple times over.

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I’ve got a follow up to this. Allergen is the Irish company that indeed produces about 90% of the world’s commercial Botox market. As others have said, Allergen just produces the finished product (a thin almost invisible film on the inside of the vials) and the toxin itself is produced in Irvine, CA. Once a year it’s shipped, and apparently only a few people on either side know when it’s coming. The amount shipped? That satisfies 90% of the global commercial market? 1g. One. Gram. Five grams are made in Irvine a year, with the other four going to defense.


Yep botulinum toxin is really toxic. Which is why it is only used subcutaneously or intramuscular. Works by chemically digesting part of the SNARE-Complex at the inside of the cellular membrane/ vesicles which is compromised of Synaptobrevin/VAMP, SNAP 25, and Syntaxin. (Synaptotagmin is also involved in fusing the vesicle with the cellular membrane but not important here). Depending on the Botulinum Toxin (A -G) it cuts either VAMP, SNAP-25 or syntaxin at some point inside the protein, making it unviable and thereby inhibiting the release of neurotransmitters into the synaptic cleft. Edit: forgot to add the part where the toxin has a light and a heavy chain. The heavy chain is the part it uses to enter a cell (by binding to a receptor on the cells surface) while the light chain is the so called endopeptidase. Without the heavy chain it becomes basically unable to harm anything, which is why we were only allowed to work with that one as students. This „harmless“ variety is produced by splicing the DNA-sequence of the light chain into the genome of E.Coli. The bacteria then „happily“ produce the toxin and we get an easy access to it without the risks, since contamination with the heavy chain is impossible in this method 🙂


or enough to kill one person REALLY REALLY DEAD.


All the Viagra in the world is made in Ireland. Pharma is a huge industry in Ireland.


I didn’t even know it was possible to kill someone multiple times over.