Parotoid gland

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For one of the human salivary glands, see parotid gland.

The parotoid gland (alternatively, paratoid gland) is an external skin gland on the back, neck, and shoulder of toads and some frogs and salamanders. It secretes a milky alkaloid substance to deter predators. The substance, bufotoxin, acts as a neurotoxin.

Parotoid glands are sometimes said to be wart-like in appearance, though warts are abnormal growths caused by viral infections while parotoid glands are normal, healthy parts of the animals that bear them. The vague similarity in appearance, however, is the reason behind the mistaken belief that touching a toad causes warts.[1]

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  1. ^ "Does touching toads gives you warts?". 2006-07-17. Retrieved 2011-07-20.