VX nerve agent molecule

VX nerve agent molecule

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Credit: LAGUNA DESIGN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: VX nerve agent. Computer model of a molecule of the nerve agent VX. VX blocks the action of an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase. This results in sustained contractions of all the muscles in the body. Sustained contraction of the diaphragm muscle causes death by asphyxiation. VX is considered the deadliest nerve agent yet developed. The molecule's chemical formula is C11.H26.N.O2.P.S. Atoms (spheres) are colour- coded: carbon (grey), hydrogen (light blue), nitrogen (dark blue), oxygen (orange), phosphorus (light brown), sulphur (yellow).

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