Saturday, February 25, 2006

Texas Poison 'Em

Ricin discovered in University of Texas dorm:
AUSTIN - A University of Texas student found a substance that has tested positive for ricin, a potentially deadly poison, in a roll of quarters she was using to do laundry in her dormitory, officials said.

The student and her roommate were being treated for potential exposure to the poison, although neither has exhibited symptoms, said Dr. Theresa Spalding of UT Student Health Services.

The student told university police she found the chunky powder Thursday as she was doing her laundry at the Moore-Hill dormitory, Spalding said. Preliminary tests for ricin came back positive Friday.

“We were very concerned as soon as we heard about the positive testing late this evening,” Spalding said. She said the quarters had been in the students’ dorm room for several months.

Ricin is extracted from castor beans and can be added to food or water, injected or sprayed as an aerosol. It can be in the form of a powder, mist, pellet, or it can be dissolved in water or weak acid.

Symptoms can include anything from difficulty breathing, fever, cough, nausea and sweating to severe vomiting and dehydration.

The dorm was sanitized and inspected, and students were cleared to return, the university said.
Has the Jihad come to the Longhorn State?


Always On Watch said...

Has the Jihad come to the Longhorn State?

Too soon to tell. But the Austin area has a high population of Muslims, and I'm pretty sure that some of them are jihadists--or potential jihadists.

Are the mosques in the Austin area financed by Saudi, the bastion of Wahhabism?

Anonymous said...

Ricin would seem to be an obvious choice for low-tech Jihadists, it is easy to make. The old soviet KGB probably used it the most, killing a Bulgarian journalist by supposedly placing the toxin on the end of an umbrella and then poking him with it. But in the end, the KGB abandoned ricin, it causes massive necropsy at the area of penetration, but it does not seem to be efficient as a systemic poison. Deep breathing vaporized ricin however, will almost certainly kill you, since it will come in contact with a large portion of your lung tissue.

Anonymous said...

Looks like it was not ricin after all.