Medical Dictionary

bacillus Calmette–Guérin

noun bacillus Cal·mette–Gué·rin \-ˌkal-ˈmet-(ˌ)gā-ˈraⁿ, -ˈran\

Medical Definition of bacillus Calmette–Guérin

  1. :  an attenuated strain of tubercle bacillus developed by repeated culture on a medium containing bile and used in preparation of tuberculosis vaccines—called also bacille Calmette-Guérin; compare bcg vaccine

Biographical Note for bacillus calmette–guérin



Albert Léon Charles

(1863–1933), French bacteriologist, and




(1872–1961), French veterinarian. A pupil of Louis Pasteur, Calmette founded in 1891 the Pasteur Institute in Saigon, in what is now Vietnam, where he discovered an antivenin snake venom serum. In 1908 his discovery that virulent bovine tubercle bacilli became less virulent after being cultured in a bile-containing medium led to his development in 1927 with Camille Guérin of a tuberculosis vaccine from a strain of tubercle bacillus now known as bacillus Calmette-Guérin. The acronym of the name of the bacillus forms part of the name of their discovery, BCG vaccine, which is widely used in the vaccination of children against tuberculosis.

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a rounded knoll or a ridge of ice

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