Navigation Links
Researcher working on destruction of chemical weapons
Date:9/24/2008

COLLEGE STATION, Sept. 24, 2008 America's war on terror includes fighting the dark side of deadly chemical agents, and Texas A&M University chemist Dr. Frank Raushel is helping with the fight by developing an enzyme that might neutralize one such chemical agent, the organophosphates.

Synthetic organophosphates started their journey as insecticides in the 1930s but soon made their way into the dangerous alleys of chemical warfare during World War II. Raushel, who has been working on detoxification of organophosphates for nearly 10 years, says that the toxic properties of the organophosphate nerve agents are a serious threat to the health and well being of civilized societies.

Although outlawed by several international treaties, some countries have used chemical agents during times of war. In 1988, the Iraqi Kurdish village of Halabja was exposed to multiple chemical agents, killing about 5,000 of the town's 50,000 residents. After the incident, traces of mustard gas and the organophosphates sarin, tabun and VX were discovered.

Raushel, the Davidson Professor of Science at Texas A&M, has been awarded a four-year grant of $1.2 million by the National Institutes of Health to carry out his work on organophosphates.

Organophosphates are neurotoxins they attack the nervous system by blocking the function of the enzyme acetylcholine esterase, which carries nerve signals. When organs such as the lungs do not receive appropriate nerve signals, control is lost over respiratory muscles, and it usually results in death by asphyxiation. Today, some classes of organophosphates are used as insecticides while others have been categorized as chemical weapons.

Researchers have discovered a bacterial enzyme, phosphotriesterase, which can recognize and destroy the toxicity of a broad spectrum of organophosphate nerve agents. What Raushel aims to do is design and characterize bacterial phosphotriesterases that are better at detecting, destroying and detoxifying those organophosphates that pose the most serious threats to human health.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Frank Raushel
raushel@mail.chem.tamu.edu
979-845-3373
Texas A&M University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Researchers note differences between people and animals on calorie restriction
2. Researchers find an essential gene for forming ears of corn
3. Researchers find animal with ability to survive climate change
4. NC State researchers get to root of parasite genome
5. Wistar Institute researcher receives New Innovator award from NIH
6. UC Davis researchers discover new drug target for inflammatory disease
7. Pittsburgh researchers identify source of multipotent stem cells with broad regenerative potential
8. U of M researchers identify gene linked to common ailment in labrador retrievers
9. Friendly bacteria protect against type 1 diabetes, Yale researchers find
10. Using novel tool, UD researchers dig through cell trash and find treasure
11. More than skin deep: Theres no such thing as a safe suntan, researchers warn
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 09, 2020 , ... Today CJ BIO announced ... will share insight on the “fifth taste” phenomenon that is revolutionizing ingredient mixes, nutritional ... Advantage will be live on Monday, July 13, 2020 at11:00 AM (CDT) during SHIFT20, ...
(Date:7/1/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... July 01, 2020 , ... ... that it had completed the purchase of Teva-Takeda Pharmaceuticals’ packaging facility in Minakuchi, ... company’s existing Japanese clinical supply facility located in Kakegawa, the new 60,000-square-foot facility ...
(Date:6/25/2020)... ... June 24, 2020 , ... eClinical Solutions LLC , ... that accelerate drug development, is collaborating with Karyopharm Therapeutics (Nasdaq: KPTI ) ... with severe COVID-19. This is the first study of an XPO1 inhibitor in ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/18/2020)... , ... July 16, 2020 , ... After research model ... completion of a great surgery is only the beginning of a successful study, while ... community. , Join Brad Gien, Global Head of Surgery from Envigo in ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... 16, 2020 , ... Medial EarlySign , a leader ... of high-burden diseases, and Centric Consulting, a business and technology consulting firm, today ... data in order to identify and prioritize patients for care. , Combining Centric’s ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Bode Technology, a leading provider ... through its COVID-19 testing service, Bode-CARES . Bode-CARES combines high-volume clinical testing ... provides a turnkey solution that includes a comprehensive collection and virus-management program for ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 09, 2020 , ... In ... commonly used to suppress pigment formation in zebrafish embryos, maintaining optical transparency to ... by Dr MA has been using the zebrafish model to investigate the causes ...
Breaking Biology Technology: