human wounds and Photorhabdus luminescens

David A. Elsemore elsemoda at
Thu Apr 18 07:10:21 EST 1996

Does anyone know of a historical reference (diary entry, history book?)
that mentions the observation that human wounds were sometimes
bioluminescent because the wound had been colonized by the bacterium
Photorhabdus luminescens?  This was taken as a good sign because this
organism produces antibiotics as well as light.  The antibiotics prevented
putrifying bacteria from infecting the wound.  These observations must
have been made before the advent of bright lights and were probably
observed on a battlefield setting.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Dave

David A. Elsemore
Visiting Research Scientist
All opinions expressed are my own.

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