to transmit information (impulses).
These chemicals allow the nervous
system to control voluntary (by choice) and involuntary, such as breathing,
body functions. Nerve agents interfere with cholinesterase, which plays a
vital role in the control of muscles around the skeleton.
permit 'acetylcholine to persist at the muscle junctions with effects of a
massive release of acetylcholine, causing an uncontrolled muscle function.
The major effects will be on skeletal muscles, the heart, lungs, and central
nervous system. See Figure 2-1 on page 2-16.
PART A - NERVE AND BLISTER AGENTS
Nerve agents are highly toxic and among the deadliest of chemical
agents. There are two types of nerve agents: the G-Series and V-Series.
G-Series nerve agents include:
Tabun (GA), Sarin (GB), and Soman, (GD).
The V-Series nerve agents are VX and VY. Information on VY is limited, and
therefore it will not be covered.
a. Nerve Agent (VX).
Nerve agent VX is an odorless, amber-colored
liquid similar in appearance to motor oil.
VX is used as a quick-acting
Casualties are produced by inhalation and/or absorption
through the skin. VX can be detected with either M8 Detector Paper or the
(1) Detection Using M8 Detector Paper.
Procedures for the detection
of nerve agent using M8 Detector Paper are:
Blot, but do not rub, the M8 Paper on the suspected liquid
agent. Be careful not to touch the liquid with your gloved
hand. You may want to put the paper on the end of a stick
or other object, then blot the paper on the liquid agent.
Compare the color change with the chart located inside the
front cover of the M8 paper booklet. If a V agent such as
VX is present, the color indicated will be green or dark
M8 paper has limitations. It will detect only liquid chemical
changes similar to those of chemical agents. As a minimum, the
soldier should wear a protective mask and gloves when performing