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Scientists Discovered a Better Cyanide Antidote for Terrorist Attacks

by Bidita Debnath on  February 2, 2013 at 11:12 PM Research News   - G J E 4
Scientists are reporting discovery of a promising substance in an advance toward closing a major gap in defenses against terrorist attacks and other mass casualty events.
 Scientists Discovered a Better Cyanide Antidote for Terrorist Attacks
Scientists Discovered a Better Cyanide Antidote for Terrorist Attacks
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This discovery could be the basis for development of a better antidote for cyanide poisoning. Their report, which describes a potential antidote that could be self-administered, much like the medication delivered by allergy injection pens, appears in ACS' Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.

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Steven E. Patterson, Ph.D., and colleagues at the University of Minnesota Center for Drug Design explain that the only existing antidotes for cyanide — recognized as a high-risk substance for potential use by terrorists — must be administered by intravenous infusion. That procedure requires highly trained paramedical personnel and takes time. Cyanide, however, is a fast-acting poison. In a situation involving mass casualties, only a limited number of victims could be saved. Patterson's team thus sought an antidote that could be administered by intra-muscular (IM) injection, a simpler procedure that could be administered rapidly to a large number of victims or even be self-administered.

Their report describes discovery of a substance, sulfanegen TEA, "which should be amenable for development as an IM injectable antidote suitable for treatment of cyanide victims in a mass casualty setting. Further development, including efficacy in lethal cyanide animal models, will be reported at a later date."

Source: Eurekalert
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