The present experiments determined the intramuscular LD50 of VX in male Göttingen minipigs at two stages of development. In pubertal animals (115 days old), the LD50 of VX was indeterminate, but approximated 33.3 μg/kg. However, in sexually mature animals (152 days old), the LD50 was estimated to be only 17.4 μg/kg. Signs of nerve agent toxicity in the Göttingen minipig were similar to those described for other species, with some notable exceptions (such as urticaria and ejaculation). Latencies to the onset of sustained convulsions were inversely related to the administered dose of VX in both ages of minipigs. Additionally, actigraphy was used to quantify the presence of tremor and convulsions and, in some cases, was useful for precisely estimating time of death. The main finding indicates that in minipigs, as in other species, even relatively small differences in age can substantially alter the toxicity of nerve agents. Additionally, actigraphy can serve as a non-invasive method of characterizing the tremors and convulsions that often accompany nerve agent intoxication.

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Journal: Toxicology Letters 264 pp.12-19.

Keywords: convulsions, Göttingen minipig, Nerve agent, Swine, tremor,

Applications: Veterinary,

CamNtech Reference: M16013

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