NBC Weapons: Perfecting A New Nerve Gas Antidote




August 31, 2009: American researchers have found a much more effective antidote for nerve gas. This one consists of a large dose of cholinesterases and beta-esterases enzyme "bioscavengers", which naturally occur in humans, but not in sufficient quantities to counteract the organophosphates (nerve gas agent) that gets into the blood and paralyzes the nervous system (and shuts down the lungs, and so on). This antidote has worked in animal tests, and has proved harmless for humans not exposed to nerve gas. But it's illegal to test the cure on humans exposed to nerve gas, even if you have volunteers.

The animal tests will have to do, until there are enough disaster situations, where large releases of organophosphates (like pesticides, which is basically nerve gas optimized for insects, but which can also injure mammals). In these cases, it is legal give emergency workers or victims the bioscavengers compound. Until then, no one will  be sure how effective the cure is, or be able to tweak it to maximum effectiveness. Meanwhile, less ethical nations can get some of the bioscavengers compound, and do some human testing, perfecting the antidote, and equipping their troops with it.


Article Archive

NBC Weapons: Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close