nerve gas

nerve gas
any of several poison gases, derived chiefly from phosphoric acid, that weaken or paralyze the nervous system, esp. that part of the system controlling respiration.

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Weapon of chemical warfare that affects the transmission of nerve impulses through the nervous system.

The organophosphorus nerve agents Tabun, Sarin, and Soman were developed by Germany during World War II but not used. They and a newer agent, VX, were produced in huge quantities by the U.S. and Soviet Union during the Cold War; their stockpiling and use during war are now banned by the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993. A single droplet of VX or Sarin, if inhaled or in contact with the skin, can be absorbed into the bloodstream and paralyze the nervous system, leading to respiratory failure and immediate death. Sarin was used in 1995 in a lethal attack in the Tokyo subways by members of AUM Shinrikyo.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • nerve gas — n an organophosphate chemical weapon that interferes with normal nerve transmission and induces intense bronchial spasm with resulting inhibition of respiration compare WAR GAS * * * any gas that disrupts the normal functioning of nerves and thus …   Medical dictionary

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