Monday, April 22, 2013

In the News: What is Ricin

This week, letters bound for the White House and the office of Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker were intercepted and found to be laced with ricin. There was an arrest today. Here’s what you need to know about the toxin everyone is talking about.

WHAT IS IT AND WHERE DOES IT COME FROM?

Like some other scary poisons, ricin is naturally occurring. It’s a protein found in Ricinus communis, the castor oil plant. It can be extracted from the waste materials (the “mash” or “bean meal”) left over from castor oil processing and turned into a powder, pellet, or mist.

WHAT DOES IT DO, AND HOW BAD IS IT?

Ricin kills cells by shutting down their ribosomal RNA, part of the molecular machine that builds their proteins. As the cells die, a ricin poisoning victim experiences different symptoms depending on how they were exposed, usually starting within 6 to 12 hours.

If the ricin was inhaled, the victim is in for difficulty breathing, chest pains, coughing, nausea, a buildup of fluid in the lungs, and respiratory failure. If the poison was ingested or injected, the victim can experience diarrhea, bloody vomit and urine, seizures, and failure of the kidneys, liver, spleen and/or heart. Death from organ failure follows within 36 to 72 hours of exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

It doesn’t take much of the stuff to wreak this kind of havoc either. The lethal dose for an adult is around 0.35 to 0.7 milligrams by inhalation (less than the mass of a single grain of sand) and between 1 and 20 mg per kilogram of body weight by ingestion (1mg/kg is about what you’d ingest if you ate a small handful of castor beans).YIKES. HOW DO YOU TREAT RICIN POISONING?

There’s no known antidote for ricin, so the best treatment is flushing it out of the body as quickly as possible while maintaining organ function and treating individual symptoms.
SCARY STUFF. WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR BESIDES TERRORIZING POLITICIANS?

Biomedical scientists have been experimenting with ricin as a cancer treatment for decades. The ricin protein is linked to an antibody to form an immunotoxin that attaches only to specific, targeted cells. Once the immunotoxin latches on to a cancer cell, the ricin does its thing.

Other than that, though, ricin is mainly for murder and mayhem. Maybe the most famous ricin victim was Georgi Markov, murdered in a scheme that seems right out of a spy novel. In 1978, the Bulgarian writer was waiting for a bus when he felt a stinging pain in the back of his leg. When he looked behind him, he saw a man with an umbrella. The man crossed the street, got in a cab and fled. Three days later, Markov was dead, murdered via a ricin-filled pellet injected into his leg by the modified umbrella. - Mental Floss



9 comments:

Anonymous said...

We stumbled over here coming from a different website and thought I may as well check things out.
I like what I see so now i'm following you. Look forward to checking out your web page repeatedly.

Here is my site - chapter 13 bankruptcy florida

Anonymous said...

Hi, i think that i saw you visited my web site thus i came to “return the favor”.
I'm attempting to find things to improve my web site!I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

My weblog :: http://www.developerwiki.org/index.php?title=User:ReggieLon

Anonymous said...

I am cuгious to fіnd out what blоg system you
have been working ωith? I'm having some minor security problems with my latest website and I'ԁ
liκe to find something mогe
ѕafeguarded. Dо you have any suggеstionѕ?


mу pаgе :: Créer site

Anonymous said...

Hellо there! I know this is kinda оff topiс howevег I'd figured I'd аѕk.

Would уοu be іntеrested in trading links or maybе guest authoгing a blog аrticle or ѵicе-versa?
My site covers a lοt of the samе subjects as youгs and I believе ωe
сοuld greatly benefіt from each other.
If you are interested feel fгee to shοot me an e-mail.

I lоοk forwаrd to hеaring fгom you!
Fantastic blog by the way!

Here iѕ my web pаgе: WEBSITE LATEN MAKEN

Anonymous said...

I constantlу ѕрent my half an hour to read thiѕ blog's content every day along with a mug of coffee.

Feel free to visit my website; hcg diet recipes phase 1

ninest123 said...

ninest123 16.03
oakley sunglasses, longchamp outlet, tory burch outlet, oakley sunglasses, michael kors outlet, louis vuitton, prada outlet, nike air max, ray ban sunglasses, gucci outlet, longchamp outlet, louboutin shoes, michael kors outlet, ray ban sunglasses, oakley sunglasses, michael kors outlet, michael kors, prada handbags, ugg boots, burberry outlet online, ugg boots, tiffany jewelry, louis vuitton, polo ralph lauren outlet, nike outlet, chanel handbags, nike free, louis vuitton outlet, replica watches, ugg boots, oakley sunglasses, louboutin outlet, louis vuitton outlet, nike air max, ray ban sunglasses, ugg boots, michael kors outlet, cheap oakley sunglasses, louboutin, polo ralph lauren outlet, christian louboutin outlet, louis vuitton, tiffany and co, uggs on sale, burberry, replica watches, michael kors outlet, longchamp, jordan shoes

ninest123 said...

louboutin, gucci, hollister, insanity workout, mcm handbags, north face outlet, lululemon, iphone 6s plus cases, jimmy choo shoes, herve leger, iphone 6s cases, instyler, wedding dresses, p90x workout, iphone 5s cases, nike air max, baseball bats, reebok shoes, asics running shoes, ralph lauren, nike roshe, vans shoes, birkin bag, mac cosmetics, oakley, abercrombie and fitch, ipad cases, beats by dre, soccer shoes, iphone cases, converse, bottega veneta, iphone 6 plus cases, chi flat iron, ghd, new balance, babyliss, celine handbags, s5 cases, valentino shoes, soccer jerseys, giuseppe zanotti, nfl jerseys, ferragamo shoes, nike air max, hollister, hollister, north face outlet, mont blanc, iphone 6 cases, vans, timberland boots

ninest123 said...

louboutin, gucci, hollister, insanity workout, mcm handbags, north face outlet, lululemon, iphone 6s plus cases, jimmy choo shoes, herve leger, iphone 6s cases, instyler, wedding dresses, p90x workout, iphone 5s cases, nike air max, baseball bats, reebok shoes, asics running shoes, ralph lauren, nike roshe, vans shoes, birkin bag, mac cosmetics, oakley, abercrombie and fitch, ipad cases, beats by dre, soccer shoes, iphone cases, converse, bottega veneta, iphone 6 plus cases, chi flat iron, ghd, new balance, babyliss, celine handbags, s5 cases, valentino shoes, soccer jerseys, giuseppe zanotti, nfl jerseys, ferragamo shoes, nike air max, hollister, hollister, north face outlet, mont blanc, iphone 6 cases, vans, timberland boots

ninest123 said...

louis vuitton, pandora jewelry, barbour jackets, moncler, canada goose uk, swarovski, pandora charms, pandora charms, supra shoes, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, louis vuitton, wedding dresses, canada goose, juicy couture outlet, juicy couture outlet, canada goose outlet, moncler, toms shoes, ugg pas cher, links of london, canada goose, barbour, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, montre pas cher, swarovski crystal, lancel, sac louis vuitton pas cher, moncler, doudoune canada goose, canada goose, thomas sabo, moncler, moncler, canada goose outlet, louis vuitton, canada goose, moncler, karen millen, ugg boots uk, coach outlet, hollister, marc jacobs, converse outlet, moncler outlet, louis vuitton, ray ban, bottes ugg, replica watches, pandora jewelry, moncler
ninest123 16.03