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:6/27/2016)... NC (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... just published their findings on what they believe could be a new and ... of the new research. Click here to read it now. , ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... BOSTON , June 27, 2016   Ginkgo ... biology to industrial engineering, was today awarded as ... a selection of the world,s most innovative companies. ... at scale for the real world in the ... organism engineers work directly with customers including Fortune ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... Mosio, a leader in clinical research ... Recruitment and Retention Tips.” Partnering with experienced clinical research professionals, Mosio revisits the ... tools, and strategies for clinical researchers. , “The landscape of how patients receive ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has signed a ... serve as their official health care provider. As ... provide sponsorship support, athletic training services, and most ... athletes and families. "We are excited ... to bring Houston Methodist quality services and programs ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:6/22/2016)... On Monday, the Department of Homeland Security ... solutions for the Biometric Exit Program. The Request for ... (CBP), explains that CBP intends to add biometrics to ... United States , in order to deter visa ... Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382209LOGO ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... leader in attendance control systems is proud to announce the introduction of fingerprint attendance ... the right employees are actually signing in, and to even control the opening of ... ... ... Photo - ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: IBM ... which consumers will be able to interact with IBM Watson ... or text and receive relevant information about the product or ... long sought an advertising solution that can create a one-to-one ... valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and touchpoints. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):