Navigation Links
Researcher working on destruction of chemical weapons
Date:11/13/2008

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 technology :

1. Richard Schulz Receives the Coveted GCPj Award for Best Clinical Researcher of the Year
2. Researchers improve ability to write and store information on electronic devices
3. Long-awaited international ethical guidelines for biobank researchers
4. Argonne researcher studies what makes quantum dots blink
5. CU researchers shed light on light-emitting nanodevice
6. Stevens researchers provide new information about mass spectrometry
7. Researchers measure carbon nanotube interaction
8. Researchers underscore limitations of genetic ancestry tests
9. ASU researchers improve memory devices using nanotech
10. UD researchers race ahead with latest spintronics achievement
11. Researchers outline structure of largest nonvirus particle ever crystallized
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/10/2017)... -- International research firm Parks Associates announced today that ... TMA 2017 Annual Meeting , October 11 in Scottsdale, Arizona ... market and how smart safety and security products impact the competitive landscape. ... Parks Associates: Smart Home Devices: Main Purchase ... "The residential security market has experienced continued growth, ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... BARBARA, CALIFORNIA (PRWEB) , ... October 10, 2017 ... ... management, technological innovation and business process optimization firm for the life sciences and ... BoxWorks conference in San Francisco. , The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... SAN DIEGO , Oct. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... a biological mechanism by which its ProCell stem ... of critical limb ischemia.  The Company, demonstrated that ... the amount of limbs saved as compared to ... of the molecule HGF resulted in reduction of ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... N.C. (PRWEB) , ... October 09, 2017 , ... At ... announced Dr. Christopher Stubbs, a professor in Harvard University’s Departments of Physics and Astronomy, ... Stubbs was a member of the winning team for the 2015 Breakthrough Prize in ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:6/14/2017)... IBM ) is introducing several innovative partner startups at ... between startups and global businesses, taking place in ... startups will showcase the solutions they have built with IBM ... France is one of the most ... increase in the number of startups created between 2012 and ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... -- RAM Group , Singaporean based technology ... biometric authentication based on a novel  quantum-state ... perform biometric authentication. These new sensors are based on a ... Group and its partners. This sensor will have widespread ... security. Ram Group is a next generation sensor ...
(Date:4/17/2017)... 17, 2017 NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ... filing of its 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday ... ... available in the Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at ... website at http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):