Highly Toxic Chemicals…The creation of new molecules has given us new materials like plastics, dyes, perfumes, novel drugs, and many more nutritious compounds. But apart from that, we have also synthesized toxic compounds that are horribly toxic to humans even in miniature amounts. The toxic elements/radioactive isotopes were not incorporated in this list. Although there are both natural and man-made chemicals included here. Beware, y’all chemists out there !!
10. CHLORINE TRIFLUORIDE
Chlorine trifluoride is a colorless, poisonous, corrosive, and extremely reactive gas that condenses to a pale-greenish yellow liquid, the form in which it is most often sold. It is well known for its ability to corrode glass. Exposure to larger amounts of chlorine trifluoride, as a liquid or as a gas, ignites living tissue. It is majorly used as rocket fuel.
Ricin is a highly potent natural lectin produced in the seeds of castor oil plants. A dose of purified ricin powder the size of a few grains of table salt can kill an adult human. It acts as a toxin by inhibiting protein synthesis. Because the symptoms are caused by failure to make protein, they may take anywhere from hours to days to appear, depending on the route of exposure and the dose.
When ingested, gastrointestinal symptoms can manifest within 6 hours; these symptoms do not always become apparent. Within 2 to 5 days of exposure to ricin, effects of ricin on the central nervous system, adrenal glands, kidneys, and liver appear. An antidote has been developed by the UK military, although it has not yet been tested on humans. Toxic Chemicals
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) says 50 to 60 mg of nicotine is a deadly dose for an adult. Although some researchers believe that it is not likely you‘ll overdose on nicotine just from smoking cigarettes. This addictive substance was developed as a defense mechanism agent by plants.
7. SODIUM CYANIDE
Used as an industrial reactant this lethal chemical can cause death within seconds. Carl Wilhelm Scheele, of Sweden, first discovered sodium cyanide in 1782 while preparing Prussian Blue dye. An oral dosage as small as 200–300 mg can be fatal. Sodium cyanide, like other soluble cyanide salts, is among the most rapidly acting of all known poisons. When treated with acid, it forms the toxic gas hydrogen cyanide.
6. BOTULINUM TOXIN A
Tiny amounts of botulinum toxin are enough to cause paralysis and even death by respiratory failure. Botulinum toxin (Botox) is a neurotoxic protein produced by the bacteria that grow in soil. It can also be found inside cans of food that were improperly processed. While botulinum toxin is generally considered safe in a clinical use ideally suited for treating things like wrinkles. Although there can be serious side effects from its use. Botulinum toxin can be injected into the wrong muscle group or with time spread from the injection site, causing paralysis of unintended muscles. Toxic Chemicals
This mighty chemical is an old favorite for assassins throughout history. It is a fact that the cause of Alexander The Great’s death was by strychnine poisoning. It is a highly toxic, colorless, bitter, crystalline alkaloid used as a pesticide. With a very high dose, it causes respiratory failure, and brain death can occur in 15 to 30 minutes. The minimum lethal dose of strychnine in humans via the oral route is 100-120 mg. There is no specific antidote for strychnine.
4. VENOMOUS AGENT X (VX)
VX is a chemical willfully created for use in the war due to its ability to fail the respiratory system resulting in death. It enters the body via skin. A dose as low as 10 mg is considered deadly. VX is an oily, relatively non-volatile, liquid that is amber-like in color.
The chemists Ranajit Ghosh and J. F. Newman discovered the V-series nerve agents at the British firm ICI in 1952. The U.S. started the production of large amounts of VX in 1961 at Newport Chemical Depot. One of the best-known references to VX is found in Tom Cruise’s film Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation(2015).
Another highly toxic nerve agent having a fruity smell and appears as a colorless liquid. The symptoms of exposure include contraction of the pupil, difficulty in breathing, slow heartbeat, loss of consciousness, nervousness/restlessness, and lung blisters. The effects of tabun appear slowly when tabun is absorbed through the skin. A victim may absorb a lethal dose quickly, although death may be delayed for one to two hours. Treatment of poisoning is often three injections of a nerve agent antidote(atropine).
Sarin is a colorless, odorless liquid generally considered as a weapon of mass destruction. It is an artificially synthesized nerve agent that attacks the nervous system by interfering with the degradation of the neurotransmitter.
Death can occur within 1-10 minutes after the direct inhalation of a lethal dose. Due to suffocation from lung muscle paralysis, unless antidotes are quickly administered. Production and stockpiling of sarin was outlawed as of April 1997 by the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993.
Batrachotoxin is a clear colored liquid alkaloid and has a vile smell resembling to smell of skunk spray. This toxin is a vigorously potent cardio- and neurotoxic chemical known to be endowed in certain species of beetles, feathers/skin of birds and is in the glands of the poison dart frogs.
It binds to the nerve cells and prevents them from closing causing paralysis. Currently, no effective antidote exists for the treatment of batrachotoxin poisoning. Toxic Chemicals