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You are here: Home » eGM Resources » Health Information & Resources Portal|Home » Bioterrorism & Chemical Agents » Abrin



What is ABRIN?

  • Abrin is a natural poison found in the seeds of a plant called the rosary pea or jequirity pea.
  • The plant from which ABRIN is derived is used as an herbal remedy in many areas throughout the world.
  • While it is similar to Ricin, Abrin is much more poisonous.
  • Abrin can be made in the form of a powder (yellowish-white), a mist, or a pellet, or it can be dissolved in water.
  • Abrin is a stable substance that can last for a long period of time in extreme conditions.
  • Abrin's source, the rosary pea, is found in tropical areas throughout the world.
  • Abrin's uses range from making beaded jewlery to medicinal healing, such as in the treatment to kill cancer cells.

How could you be exposed to ABRIN ?

  • It takes a deliberate action to obtain abrin from the seeds and use it as a poison. Accidental exposure is unlikely.
  • Abrin can be exposed to you by inhalation, ingestion, and injection.
  • While casual person to person contact does not spread ABRIN, you can be exposed to the subtance by touching or coming into physical contact with a surface where ABRIN particles or droplets have landed.



Source: Centers for Disease Control
Get more information on ABRIN from the Centers for Disease Control.

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