Prussian blue as an antidote for radioactive thallium and cesium poisoning
Marina Altagracia-Martínez, Jaime Kravzov-Jinich, Juan Manuel Martínez-Núñez, Camilo Ríos-Castañeda, Francisco López-Naranjo
Departments of Biological Systems and Health Care, Biological and Health Sciences Division, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Xochimilco, Mexico DF, Mexico
Background: Following the attacks on the US on September 11, 2001, potentially millions of people might experience contamination from radioactive metals. However, before the specter of such accidents arose, Prussian blue was known only as an investigational agent for accidental thallium and cesium poisoning. The purpose of this review is to update the state of the art concerning use of Prussian blue as an effective and safe drug against possible bioterrorism attacks and to disseminate medical information in order to contribute to the production of Prussian blue as a biodefense drug.
Methods: We compiled articles from a systematic review conducted from January 1, 1960 to March 30, 2011. The electronic databases consulted were Medline, PubMed, the Cochrane Library, and Scopus.
Results: Prussian blue is effective and safe for use against radioactive intoxications involving cesium-137 and thallium. The US Food and Drug Administration has approved Prussian blue as a drug, but there is only one manufacturer providing Prussian blue to the US. Based on the evidence, Prussian blue is effective for use against radioactive intoxications involving cesium-137 and thallium, but additional clinical research on and production of Prussian blue are needed.
Keywords: Prussian blue, radioactive cesium, thallium, intoxication, biodefense drug
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