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Ricin

Castor beans

The protein ricin (pronounced rye-sin) is a poison manufactured from the castor bean (Ricinus communis). Its name comes from the seed's resemblance to the tick. Ricin can be extracted from castor beans and is known to have an average lethal dose in humans of 0.2 milligrams (1/5,000th of a gram), though some sources give higher figures [1]. It is considered to be twice as deadly as cobra venom.

Toxicity and manufacture

Ricin is poisonous if inhaled, injected, or ingested, acting as a toxin by the inhibition of protein synthesis. There is no known antidote; only symptomatic and supportive treatment is available. Long term organ damage is likely in survivors. In small doses, such as the typical dose contained in a measure of castor oil, ricin causes digestive tract cramps. Ingested in larger doses, ricin causes severe diarrhea and victims can die of shock. (See abrin).

Although the castor bean plant has long been noted for its toxicity, ricin was first isolated and named in 1888 by Hermann Stillmark. Modern feed-making techniques break down the ricin in castor beans by heating at 140 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes, although some studies suggest that residual toxic effects may linger. Although one seed contains enough ricin to kill an adult human, they may pass harmlessly through the digestive system if swallowed whole. [2]. Typically 2.5–20 raw seeds can kill an adult human; 4 a rabbit, 5 a sheep, 6 an ox, 6 a horse, 7 a pig, 11 a dog, but 80 for cocks and ducks.[3]

Ricin consists of two distinct protein chains (almost 30kDa each) that are linked to each other by disulfide bond:

  • Ricin A is toxic to the cell by interfering with Ribosomes, responsible for protein synthesis
  • Ricin B is important in assisting ricin A's entry into a cell by binding with a cell surface component.

Many plants such as barley have the A chain but not the B chain. Since people do not get sick from eating large amounts of such products, ricin A is of extremely low toxicity if and only if the B chain is not present.

Ricin is easily purified from castor-oil manufacturing waste. The seed-pulp left over from pressing for castor oil contains on average about 5% by weight of ricin. Since 0.2 mg of purified Ricin constitutes a fatal dose, this is a considerable amount of ricin.

As little as one castor bean, about 0.5 grams, may be fatal in a child.

In the United states, a person caught manufacturing or possessing ricin may be sentenced up to 30 years in prison.

Potential medicinal use

Ricin may have therapeutic use in the treatment of cancer. Ricin could be linked to a monoclonal antibody to target malignant cells recognized by the antibody. Genetic modification of ricin is believed to be possible to lessen its toxicity to humans, but not to the cancer cells. A promising approach is also to use the non-toxic B subunit as a vehicle for delivering antigens into cells thus greatly increasing their immunogenicity. Use of ricin as an adjuvant has potential implications for developing mucosal vaccines

Use as a chemical/biological warfare agent

The United States investigated ricin for its military potential during the First World War. At that time it was being considered for use either as a toxic dust or coated bullets and shrapnel. The dust cloud concept could not be adequately developed, and researchers believed the coated bullet/shrapnel concept was unethical. The War ended before it was weaponized.

During the Second World War the United States and Canada undertook studying ricin in cluster bombs. Though there were plans for mass production and several field trials with different bomblet concepts, the end conclusion was that it was no more economical than using phosgene. This conclusion was based on comparison of the final weapons rather than ricin's toxicity (LD50 <30 mg.min.m–3). Ricin was given the military symbol W.

The best-known documented use of ricin as an agent of biological warfare was by the Soviet Union's KGB during the Cold War. In 1978, the Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov was assassinated by Bulgarian secret police who surreptitiously 'shot' him on a London street with a modified umbrella using compressed gas to fire a tiny pellet contaminated with ricin into his leg. He died in hospital a few days later; the pellet was discovered by chance during an autopsy and the poison linked back to the KGB. Earlier, Soviet dissident Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn also suffered (but survived) ricin-like symptoms after a 1971 encounter with KGB agents (D.M. Thomas, Alexander Solzhenitsyn: A Century in His Life, 368-378).

Despite ricin's extreme toxicity and utility as an agent of chemical/biological warfare, it is extremely difficult to limit the production of the toxin. Under both the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention and the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, ricin is listed as a schedule 1 controlled substance. Despite this, more than 1 million metric tonnes of castor beans are processed each year, and approximately 5% of the total is rendered into a waste containing high concentrations of ricin toxin [4].

In August of 2002, US officials asserted that the Islamic militant group Ansar al-Islam tested ricin, along with other chemical and biological agents, in northern Iraq.

To put ricin used as weapon into perspective, it is worth noting that as a biological weapon or chemical weapon, ricin may be considered as not very powerful, if only in comparison with other poisons such as botulinum or anthrax. Hence, a military willing to use biological weapons and having advanced resources would rather use either of the latter instead. Ricin is easy to produce, but is not as practical nor likely to cause as high casualities as other agents. Ricin denatures (ie, the protein changes structure and becomes less dangerous) much more readily than anthrax spores, which may remain lethal for decades. (Jan van Aken, an expert on biological weapons explained in an interview with the German magazine Der Spiegel that he judges it rather reassuring that Al Qaeda experimented with ricin as it suggests their inability to produce botulin or anthrax.)

Pure ricin could be dispersed through the air, however it would tend to be oxidized and rendered harmless by ozone, nitrogen oxides, and other pollutants in a matter of hours. Since it acts as an enzyme, catalyzing destruction of ribosomes, even a single oxidation is likely to render the ricin molecule harmless. Presumably it could be sealed inside some sort of dust particle that would dissolve in water, but this would be difficult.

The major reason it is dangerous is that there is no specific antidote, and that it is very easy to obtain (the castor bean plant is a common ornamental, and can be grown at home without any special care). Ricin is actually several orders of magnitude less toxic than botulinum or tetanus toxins, but those are more difficult to obtain.

Ricin patent

"Preparation of Toxic Ricin",
patent application.

The process for creating ricin is well-known, in part because a patent was granted for it in 1952. The inventors named in US Patent 3,060,165 (granted October 23, 1962) "Preparation of Toxic Ricin", assigned to the U.S. Secretary of the Army, are Harry L. Craig, O.H. Alderks, Alsoph H. Corwin, Sally H. Dieke, and Charlotte Karel.

The patent was removed from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) database sometime in 2004, but is still available online through international patent databases.

Ricin extraction process

The extraction of ricin from castor beans is very similar to the prepartion of soy protein isolates. Modern extraction plants might use membrane filtration to make highly purified ricin isolates

Ricin is initially extracted from defatted castor beans by aquous extraction at pH 3.8 to yield a leachate containing solubilized ricin. The leachate is filtered to remove insoluble matter and the crude ricin then precipitated by the addition of a 12% solution of sodium sulfate with a pH of 7.0-8.0. After precipitation, the crude ricin cake is washed with a 16.7% solution of sodium sulfate to remove extranious nitrogenous substances. The precipitated ricin may be reextracted once to further purify it.

The final ricin precipitate is dried and then purified by floatation in carbon tetrachloride. An aerosol powder may be prepared by spray drying or air grinding the purified ricin using cold air.

Ricin-related arrests in Britain in 2003

It was widely reported in the media that traces of ricin were detected by British police in a flat in Wood Green, North London after a raid on a suspected ring of terrorists on 5 January 2003. Media reports stated that a group was suspected of intending to use the poison in an attack on the London Underground. However at the trial of Kamel Bourgass in 2005 it became apparent that within a few days of the raid the leader of the Biological Weapon Identification Group at the Porton Down Defence Science and Technology Laboratory had concluded that ricin was not present at Wood Green [5] [6]. Some acetone, 22 castor beans, and poor recipes for ricin and other poisons copied from the Internet were found. It appears that an individual conducting amateur research on poisons was found in this raid.

A little later several arrests were made in France and a bottle of something that tested positive for ricin was found. Further analysis identified the material as ground wheat germ. The analytic confusion was caused by the similarity of many plant proteins to one of the ricin components, which suggests that higher quality (better specificity and sensitivity) analytic tests for ricin are needed.

Six more suspects were arrested in Bournemouth in England in connection with the investigation into the alleged ricin incident in London. They were not convicted of any poisons related crime.

Three more suspects were arrested in Manchester in England in connection with the investigation of the alleged ricin found in London, following a raid carried out pursuant to an investigation into immigration issues. A Special Branch policeman, DC Stephen Oake, was fatally stabbed during the arrests, and three other officers were also injured, one seriously.

On January 20, 2003 Finsbury Park mosque was raided by police, apparently as part of the investigation into the alleged discovery of ricin in Wood Green. A number of men who were apparently living at the mosque were arrested.

On February 5, 2003, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell presented those arrested as the "UK Poison Cell" of a global terrorist network in making the case for military intervention in Iraq to the UN Security Council [7].

In April 2005 31-year-old Kamel Bourgass was jailed for 17 years after being convicted of conspiracy to commit a public nuisance "by the use of poisons and explosives to cause disruption, fear or injury". He was also jailed for life following a conviction for murdering the Special Branch policeman who went to arrest him. All others accused in connection with the Wood Green flat were acquitted on all counts.

Ricin in Washington, D.C.

Ricin was detected in the mail at the White House in Washington, D.C. in November of 2003. The letter containing it was intercepted at a mail handling facility off the grounds of the White House, and it never reached its intended destination. The letter contained a fine powdery substance that later tested positive for ricin. Investigators said it was low potency and was not considered a health risk. This information was not made public until February 3, 2004, when preliminary tests showed the presence of ricin in an office mailroom of U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's office. There were no signs that anyone who was near the contaminated area developed any medical problems. Several Senate office buildings were closed as a precaution.

Ricin in popular culture

Ricin was the poison used in the Agatha Christie Tommy and Tuppence whodunnit The House of Lurking Death in a 1929 collection of short stories called Partners in Crime.

Ricin was used as the poison of choice of the murderer in the 1962 comedy film Kill or Cure.

Ricin was mentioned in the "call me the prankster" comic at toothpaste for dinner

The Penn and Teller book How To Play With Your Food (ISBN 0679743111) includes a "gimmicks envelope" of small objects related to the tricks inside the book. One of these is a sticker reading "With all-natural ricin!". The book explains that ricin is a poison.


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The book explains that ricin is a poison. The company is well-known for its charitable contributions, which it tends to keep quiet about. One of these is a sticker reading "With all-natural ricin!". Sears Holdings Corporation sponsors the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. The Penn and Teller book How To Play With Your Food (ISBN 0679743111) includes a "gimmicks envelope" of small objects related to the tricks inside the book. Sears Holdings has many exclusive brands:. Ricin was mentioned in the "call me the prankster" comic at toothpaste for dinner. Because Kmart Corporation changed its name to Sears Holdings and because it is converting some Big Kmart stores to Sears Essentials stores as a test, there is speculation that Sears Holdings may drop the Kmart name entirely in the next decade.

Ricin was used as the poison of choice of the murderer in the 1962 comedy film Kill or Cure. Like Target stores, Kmart-branded stores in Australia belong to Coles Myer; Coles Myer also holds the rights to the Kmart brand in New Zealand. Ricin was the poison used in the Agatha Christie Tommy and Tuppence whodunnit The House of Lurking Death in a 1929 collection of short stories called Partners in Crime. stores. Several Senate office buildings were closed as a precaution. Sears Holdings owns 55% of Sears Canada, a large department store chain in Canada, similar to the U.S. There were no signs that anyone who was near the contaminated area developed any medical problems. For example, Craftsman tools are now available in Kmart stores; they were previously exclusive to the Sears brand.

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's office. Sears Holdings has began cross-selling merchandise between its two brands. This information was not made public until February 3, 2004, when preliminary tests showed the presence of ricin in an office mailroom of U.S. Analysts speculated that Nike did not want its shoes and apparel sold in Kmart stores, and terminated its sales agreement with Sears Holdings to prevent this. Investigators said it was low potency and was not considered a health risk. In 2005, Nike announced that it would no longer allow its products to be sold in Sears stores. The letter contained a fine powdery substance that later tested positive for ricin. This new store format combines the Sears store concept with the Kmart format, which allows the company to better compete with Wal-Mart and Target.

The letter containing it was intercepted at a mail handling facility off the grounds of the White House, and it never reached its intended destination. In 2005, Sears introduced a new store format, called Sears Essentials; Some Kmart locations are to be converted to the Sears Essentials format, while new locations will also be built. in November of 2003. Sears Holdings continues to operate stores under the Sears and Kmart mastheads. Ricin was detected in the mail at the White House in Washington, D.C. The merger was completed on March 24, 2005, after receiving regulatory approval from the government and approval by shareholders of both companies. All others accused in connection with the Wood Green flat were acquitted on all counts. Stockholders had a choice of receiving either stock or cash, subject to the pre-defined ratio.

He was also jailed for life following a conviction for murdering the Special Branch policeman who went to arrest him. Shares of Sears, Roebuck and Company stock was converted into a combination of 55% stock and 45% cash (at $50 a share). In April 2005 31-year-old Kamel Bourgass was jailed for 17 years after being convicted of conspiracy to commit a public nuisance "by the use of poisons and explosives to cause disruption, fear or injury". Shareholders in Kmart Corporation received one share in the new company. Secretary of State Colin Powell presented those arrested as the "UK Poison Cell" of a global terrorist network in making the case for military intervention in Iraq to the UN Security Council [7]. The new company would directed by a board of directors comprised of members from the two companies: seven members from Kmart's board, three from Sears'. On February 5, 2003, U.S. The two companies cited several reasons for combining forces:.

A number of men who were apparently living at the mosque were arrested. It announced at the time that it would continue operate stores under both the Sears and Kmart brands. On January 20, 2003 Finsbury Park mosque was raided by police, apparently as part of the investigation into the alleged discovery of ricin in Wood Green. As a part of the merger, Kmart Corporation would change its name to Sears Holdings Corporation. A Special Branch policeman, DC Stephen Oake, was fatally stabbed during the arrests, and three other officers were also injured, one seriously. On November 17, 2004, Kmart Corporation announced its intentions to purchase Sears, Roebuck and Company; the purchase was billed as a merger of equals. Three more suspects were arrested in Manchester in England in connection with the investigation of the alleged ricin found in London, following a raid carried out pursuant to an investigation into immigration issues. The company no longer owns the building.

They were not convicted of any poisons related crime. This building, located in Chicago, is the tallest building in the United States. Six more suspects were arrested in Bournemouth in England in connection with the investigation into the alleged ricin incident in London. Sears, Roebuck and Company built the famed Sears Tower, which was completed in 1974. The analytic confusion was caused by the similarity of many plant proteins to one of the ricin components, which suggests that higher quality (better specificity and sensitivity) analytic tests for ricin are needed. A number of class action lawsuits have been prepared and successfully won against the company.[1]. Further analysis identified the material as ground wheat germ. Sears has also been shouldered with the problem of keeping a sound legal basis for its actions.

A little later several arrests were made in France and a bottle of something that tested positive for ricin was found. In the late 1990s, the company's market share in many areas deteriorated rapidly as Wal-Mart drew away working-class consumers, and Federated Department Stores attracted wealthier consumers. It appears that an individual conducting amateur research on poisons was found in this raid. Higgins sporting brand from 1908 until 1961, and this alienated them from their historical core of rural and working-class consumers. Some acetone, 22 castor beans, and poor recipes for ricin and other poisons copied from the Internet were found. C. However at the trial of Kamel Bourgass in 2005 it became apparent that within a few days of the raid the leader of the Biological Weapon Identification Group at the Porton Down Defence Science and Technology Laboratory had concluded that ricin was not present at Wood Green [5] [6]. In the early 1980s, Sears ceased selling shotguns, which had previously even been sold under their internal J.

Media reports stated that a group was suspected of intending to use the poison in an attack on the London Underground. Morgan Chase in August 2005. It was widely reported in the media that traces of ricin were detected by British police in a flat in Wood Green, North London after a raid on a suspected ring of terrorists on 5 January 2003. The remaining card operations was sold to J.P. An aerosol powder may be prepared by spray drying or air grinding the purified ricin using cold air. In 2003, they sold their retail credit card operation to Citibank because the credit cards were draining profits from the company. The final ricin precipitate is dried and then purified by floatation in carbon tetrachloride. However, Sears Holdings does continue to produce speciality catalogs and the Holiday Wish Book.

The precipitated ricin may be reextracted once to further purify it. In 1993, Sears stopped production of its general merchandise catalog because of sinking sales and profits. After precipitation, the crude ricin cake is washed with a 16.7% solution of sodium sulfate to remove extranious nitrogenous substances. In the 1980s and 1990s, the company divested themselves of many non-retail entities, which were creating a burden on the company's bottom line. The leachate is filtered to remove insoluble matter and the crude ricin then precipitated by the addition of a 12% solution of sodium sulfate with a pH of 7.0-8.0. This led to public opposition to Sears' policies, and alienated customers. Ricin is initially extracted from defatted castor beans by aquous extraction at pH 3.8 to yield a leachate containing solubilized ricin. Wal-Mart responded by creating Code Adam procedures to protect children that are in the store, whereas Sears initially ignored the risk, hoping it would go away on its own.

Modern extraction plants might use membrane filtration to make highly purified ricin isolates. Adam Walsh, the son of reporter John Walsh (America's Most Wanted), was abducted from a Sears department store in Hollywood, Florida, in 1981 at the age of six; his severed head was later found in Vero Beach, FL. The extraction of ricin from castor beans is very similar to the prepartion of soy protein isolates. Sears formerly traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker of "S", which is now used by the Sprint Nextel Corporation. The patent was removed from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) database sometime in 2004, but is still available online through international patent databases. In 2004, Sears launched a new store concept called Sears Grand which it hopes will be a viable competitor to hypermarkets like Wal-Mart Supercenters. Dieke, and Charlotte Karel. In late 2004, the logo was switched from all upper case to upper and lower case.

Corwin, Sally H. Now it consists of the blue text, Sears, with a white line separating each letter down along the length of its strokes. Alderks, Alsoph H. Previously, the Sears logo consisted of the name "Sears" in a rectangle. Craig, O.H. The current Sears logo was created in 1984. Secretary of the Army, are Harry L. Roebuck was dropped from the name of the stores, though not from the official corporate name in the 1970s.

The inventors named in US Patent 3,060,165 (granted October 23, 1962) "Preparation of Toxic Ricin", assigned to the U.S. During the late 1980s, and as late as 1993, the Discover card was the only accepted credit card at many Sears retail locations. The process for creating ricin is well-known, in part because a patent was granted for it in 1952. It also introduced the Discover credit card in 1985. Ricin is actually several orders of magnitude less toxic than botulinum or tetanus toxins, but those are more difficult to obtain. It purchased Dean Witter and Coldwell Banker real estate in 1981, and started what became Prodigy as a joint venture in 1984. The major reason it is dangerous is that there is no specific antidote, and that it is very easy to obtain (the castor bean plant is a common ornamental, and can be grown at home without any special care). The company started the Allstate Insurance Company back in 1931 and had representatives operating in its stores as early as 1934.

Presumably it could be sealed inside some sort of dust particle that would dissolve in water, but this would be difficult. It established several major brands of products such as Kenmore, Craftsman, DieHard, and Tuff-skin. Since it acts as an enzyme, catalyzing destruction of ribosomes, even a single oxidation is likely to render the ricin molecule harmless. Sears diversified and became a conglomerate during the mid-20th century. Pure ricin could be dispersed through the air, however it would tend to be oxidized and rendered harmless by ozone, nitrogen oxides, and other pollutants in a matter of hours. The company was the largest retailer in the United States until the early 1980s but had dropped significantly in rankings by the time it merged with Kmart. (Jan van Aken, an expert on biological weapons explained in an interview with the German magazine Der Spiegel that he judges it rather reassuring that Al Qaeda experimented with ricin as it suggests their inability to produce botulin or anthrax.). After World War II, the company built many stores in suburban shopping malls.

Ricin denatures (ie, the protein changes structure and becomes less dangerous) much more readily than anthrax spores, which may remain lethal for decades. "I'm going to read the Sears catalog" was a polite way of saying "I'm going to the outhouse.". Ricin is easy to produce, but is not as practical nor likely to cause as high casualities as other agents. In the days of outhouses and no readily available toilet paper, the pages of the mass-mailed catalog were used as toilet paper. Hence, a military willing to use biological weapons and having advanced resources would rather use either of the latter instead. The catalog also entered the language, particularly of rural dwellers, as a euphemism for toilet paper. To put ricin used as weapon into perspective, it is worth noting that as a biological weapon or chemical weapon, ricin may be considered as not very powerful, if only in comparison with other poisons such as botulinum or anthrax. The Sears, Roebuck catalog was sometimes referred to as "the Consumers' Bible." The Christmas Catalog was known as the "Wish Book", perhaps because of the toys in it.

In August of 2002, US officials asserted that the Islamic militant group Ansar al-Islam tested ricin, along with other chemical and biological agents, in northern Iraq. In addition to mail-order or rail shipment of large purchases, items could also be picked up at the Sears Store in a nearby town when retail outlets were opened. Despite this, more than 1 million metric tonnes of castor beans are processed each year, and approximately 5% of the total is rendered into a waste containing high concentrations of ricin toxin [4]. The first free standing department store was opened October 5, 1925 in Evansville, Indiana. Under both the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention and the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, ricin is listed as a schedule 1 controlled substance. Sears issued many catalogs and didn't open its first retail store until 1925, when the business was already 32 years old. Despite ricin's extreme toxicity and utility as an agent of chemical/biological warfare, it is extremely difficult to limit the production of the toxin. In 1908, the company began offering entire houses as kits, marketed as Sears Modern Homes, and by the time the program ended in 1940, over 100,000 had been sold.

Thomas, Alexander Solzhenitsyn: A Century in His Life, 368-378). This laid important groundwork for supplying a home, possibly the largest single investment a typical family would ever make. Earlier, Soviet dissident Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn also suffered (but survived) ricin-like symptoms after a 1971 encounter with KGB agents (D.M. People had learned to trust Sears for other products bought mail-order, and thus, sight unseen. He died in hospital a few days later; the pellet was discovered by chance during an autopsy and the poison linked back to the KGB. soon developed a reputation for both quality products and customer satisfaction. In 1978, the Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov was assassinated by Bulgarian secret police who surreptitiously 'shot' him on a London street with a modified umbrella using compressed gas to fire a tiny pellet contaminated with ricin into his leg. Sears, Roebuck and Co.

The best-known documented use of ricin as an agent of biological warfare was by the Soviet Union's KGB during the Cold War. By the following year, dolls, icebox refrigerators, cook-stoves and groceries had been added to the catalog. Ricin was given the military symbol W. Alvah Roebuck had to resign soon after due to ill-health, but the company still retained his name. This conclusion was based on comparison of the final weapons rather than ricin's toxicity (LD50 <30 mg.min.m–3). Organizing the company so it could handle orders on an economical and efficient basis, Chicago clothing manufacturer Julius Rosenwald became a part-owner in 1895. Though there were plans for mass production and several field trials with different bomblet concepts, the end conclusion was that it was no more economical than using phosgene. By 1894, the Sears catalog had grown to 322 pages, featuring sewing machines, bicycles, sporting goods and a host of other new items.

During the Second World War the United States and Canada undertook studying ricin in cluster bombs. The catalog business grew quickly. The War ended before it was weaponized. Richard Sears knew that farmers often brought their crops to town where they could be sold and shipped, and then bought supplies, often at very high prices, from local general stores. The dust cloud concept could not be adequately developed, and researchers believed the coated bullet/shrapnel concept was unethical. In 1893, the corporate name became Sears, Roebuck and Co.. At that time it was being considered for use either as a toxic dust or coated bullets and shrapnel. Roebuck who joined him in the business.

The United States investigated ricin for its military potential during the First World War. The next year, he moved to Chicago, Illinois where he met Alvah C. Use of ricin as an adjuvant has potential implications for developing mucosal vaccines. Soon he started a business selling watches. A promising approach is also to use the non-toxic B subunit as a vehicle for delivering antigens into cells thus greatly increasing their immunogenicity. Sears purchased them himself, and sold the watches at a nice profit to other station agents up and down the line, and then ordered more for resale. Genetic modification of ricin is believed to be possible to lessen its toxicity to humans, but not to the cancer cells. Richard Sears was a railroad station agent in Minnesota when he received a shipment of watches which were unwanted by a local jeweler.

Ricin could be linked to a monoclonal antibody to target malignant cells recognized by the antibody. Many people lived in rural areas and typically farmed. Ricin may have therapeutic use in the treatment of cancer. In 1886, the United States contained only 38 states. In the United states, a person caught manufacturing or possessing ricin may be sentenced up to 30 years in prison. Once a major presence in Canada, after being sold to Zellers in the late 1990s, which was subsequently bought by the Hudson's Bay Company, all Kmart stores there were either closed or converted to the Zellers name. As little as one castor bean, about 0.5 grams, may be fatal in a child. The lime green prototype was abandoned for the new Kmart "Orange" concept that rolled out at 9 test stores nationwide.

Since 0.2 mg of purified Ricin constitutes a fatal dose, this is a considerable amount of ricin. However, Kmart could not afford a full-scale rollout. The seed-pulp left over from pressing for castor oil contains on average about 5% by weight of ricin. The new layout has wider aisles, better selection and better lighting. Ricin is easily purified from castor-oil manufacturing waste. Kmart introduced 5 then new prototype stores with a new logo, layout and color scheme (lime green and gray) in 2002 with one in White Lake, Michigan and four in Peoria, Illinois. Since people do not get sick from eating large amounts of such products, ricin A is of extremely low toxicity if and only if the B chain is not present.. On May 6, 2003, Kmart officially emerged from bankruptcy protection as Kmart Holding Corporation and on June 10, 2003 it began trading on the NASDAQ as "KMRT".

Many plants such as barley have the A chain but not the B chain. After firing Conaway and Schwartz, It shut down more than 300 stores in the United States and laid off around 34,000 workers as part of a badly-needed restructuring. Ricin consists of two distinct protein chains (almost 30kDa each) that are linked to each other by disulfide bond:. Similar to the Enron scandal, Conway and Schwartz were accused of misleading shareholders and other company officials of the company's financial crisis, while they were allegedly making millions and allegedly spending the company's money on planes, houses, boats, and other luxuries. Typically 2.5–20 raw seeds can kill an adult human; 4 a rabbit, 5 a sheep, 6 an ox, 6 a horse, 7 a pig, 11 a dog, but 80 for cocks and ducks.[3]. On January 22, 2002, Kmart filed for bankruptcy protection; led into the bankruptcy by its then chairman Chuck Conaway and president Mark Schwartz. [2]. In August 2001, Target Corporation sued Kmart for false advertising; Target claimed that its "Dare to Compare" campaign routinely misstated both Kmart's and Target's prices.

Although one seed contains enough ricin to kill an adult human, they may pass harmlessly through the digestive system if swallowed whole. The company could simply not afford to match Wal-Mart's prices. Modern feed-making techniques break down the ricin in castor beans by heating at 140 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes, although some studies suggest that residual toxic effects may linger. In addition, Kmart attempted to compete against Wal-Mart on price by introducing the "Blue Light Always" campaign, which ditched the original blue light concept for lower prices in general. Although the castor bean plant has long been noted for its toxicity, ricin was first isolated and named in 1888 by Hermann Stillmark. In 2001, the stock scandal involving Martha Stewart severely hurt the corporation's image. (See abrin). No records exist of anyone actually shouting "Blue Light, Blue Light!" It has since ended the "blue light special" again.

Ingested in larger doses, ricin causes severe diarrhea and victims can die of shock. This scheme aimed to generate more interest in Kmart from shoppers and the media, but failed because stores did not follow the procedure. In small doses, such as the typical dose contained in a measure of castor oil, ricin causes digestive tract cramps. When the announcement of the special took place over the public address system, music would fill the store and all employees would stop their current actions, clap twice and pump their fists in the air, shouting "Blue Light, Blue Light!". Long term organ damage is likely in survivors. The company then brought back the "blue light special", which involved the manager announcing a promotion in-store every hour, on the hour—said special lasting for 25 minutes. There is no known antidote; only symptomatic and supportive treatment is available. The original "blue light special" had disappeared in 1991 due to changing consumer habits and misuse by individual stores (according to the company's official explanation).

Ricin is poisonous if inhaled, injected, or ingested, acting as a toxin by the inhibition of protein synthesis. Many business analysts also faulted the corporation for failing to create a coherent brand image. . Furthermore, Kmart maintained a high dividend, which reduced the amount of money available for improving its stores. It is considered to be twice as deadly as cobra venom. Unlike competitor Wal-Mart, it failed to invest in computer technology to manage its supply chain. Ricin can be extracted from castor beans and is known to have an average lethal dose in humans of 0.2 milligrams (1/5,000th of a gram), though some sources give higher figures [1]. In 1993 Kmart closed 110 stores.

Its name comes from the seed's resemblance to the tick. In the 1990s, Kmart made a number of missteps, again. The protein ricin (pronounced rye-sin) is a poison manufactured from the castor bean (Ricinus communis). Rosie O'Donnell and Penny Marshall were among the company's most-recognized spokespersons. Ricin B is important in assisting ricin A's entry into a cell by binding with a cell surface component. Other recognizable brands included Sesame Street and Disney. Ricin A is toxic to the cell by interfering with Ribosomes, responsible for protein synthesis. It also began to offer exclusive merchandise by Martha Stewart, Kathy Ireland, and Jaclyn Smith.

This then-new logo was replaced in 2004 with the current logo. However, most stores were not remodeled until the mid-1990s, some of which are not completely renovated today. In 1990, in an effort to change their image, Kmart introduced a new logo (dropping the old-style italic "K" with a turquoise "mart", created in the early 1970s), and gave many stores a very badly needed renovation. Inventory piled up, checkout lines grew, and customers abandoned the stores.

During the 1970s, the company's fortunes began to change; many of Kmart's stores were badly outdated and in decaying condition. The first Super Kmart Center opened in 1991 in Medina, Ohio. The first Big Kmart opened in 1996. In 1987, Kmart Corporation sold its remaining Kresge stores.

Kresge Corporation changed its name to Kmart Corporation. S. In 1977, S. During the 1970s, Kmart put a number of competing retailers out of business.

Kmart was also featured in the Oscar-winning 1988 film Rain Man, in which Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman both famously exclaim, "Kmart sucks!". The phrase "attention Kmart shoppers" also entered into the American pop psyche. Kmart became known for its "blue light specials": at surprise moments, a store worker would light up a mobile police light and offer a discount in a part of the store. Kmart Foods, a long forgotten, now defunct chain of Kmart supermarkets opened in in that same decade.

A total of 18 Kmart stores opened that year. The first Kmart department store opened in 1962 in Garden City, Michigan. By the 1920s, Kresge operated larger stores that offered a wider variety of merchandise and prices—precursors of the modern discount store. By 1912, the chain operated 85 stores.

Kresge. S. The store grew into a chain known as S. Kresge's first retail establishment, a five-and-ten-cent store, resembled those operated by Frank Woolworth.

Kresge Corporation, the predecessor of Kmart, in 1899 in Detroit, Michigan. Kresge founded the S.S. Sebastian S. .

The company maintains its corporate headquarters in Hoffman Estates, and it maintains the Kmart brand from Michigan. The company operates 3,800 retail locations under the mastheads of Sears, Sears Grand, Sears Essentials, Kmart, Big Kmart, Kmart SuperCenter, The Great Indoors, Orchard Supply Hardware, and Lands' End stores. It was formed in 2005 by the purchase of Sears, Roebuck and Company of Hoffman Estates, Illinois by Kmart Corporation of Troy, Michigan. Sears Holdings Corporation NASDAQ: SHLD is the third largest retailer in the United States, behind Wal-Mart and The Home Depot.


. Ward, (1995) Houses By Mail: A Guide to Houses from Sears, Roebuck and Company John Wiley & Sons; Hoboken, New Jersey. Stevenson, Katherin Cole, and Jandl, H. (1987) The Big Store: Inside the Crisis and Revolution at Sears Viking Press; New York.

Katz, Donald R. Sears Holdings was named one of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers in 2004 by Working Mothers magazine. Sears Holdings received a 57% rating on the 2004 Corporate Equality Index published by the Human Rights Campaign. Ty Pennington STYLE home decor.

Joe Boxer underwear and home decor. Route 66 clothing. Lands' End clothing. Thalia Sodi-branded clothing and jewelry.

Sesame Street-branded clothing. Jaclyn Smith-branded clothing. Martha Stewart-branded home decor, kitchen and home improvement items. DieHard car batteries.

Kenmore appliances. Craftsman tools. Sears now owns 80.1% of the chain, and revealed intentions in May 2005 to spin it off. There are currently 84 stores, all of them in California.

Orchard Supply Stores are about 40,000 square feet (4,000 m²). Orchard Supply Hardware: free-standing hardware stores that carry home repair, hardware products and lawn and garden supplies. These stores are located in outlet malls and regular malls. Lands' End: Aside from carrying the Lands' End clothing line at Sears stores, Sears Holdings also operates 16 Lands' End stores that carry only Lands' End clothing.

These stores are about 130,000 square feet (12,000 m²). The Great Indoors: free-standing home décor stores that carry appliances, bedding, and kitchen and bath fixtures. Sears Home: A defunct Sears store which sold furniture which closed in 2001 after failing. These stores are essentially hybrids of a Sears and Kmart store.

Sears Grand stores are about 165,000 to 210,000 square feet (15,000 to 20,000 m²); Sears Essentials stores are about 70,000 to 100,000 square feet. Sears Grand/Sears Essentials: located away from shopping malls (often free-standing); carries everything a regular Sears carries, plus health and beauty, toys, baby care, cleaning supplies, home décor, pet food, cards and party supplies, books, magazines, electronics, and a limited amount of food. Sears has started closing many of these down as more and more of its service and repair business is home-based. Typically labeled Sears Service Center or Sears Home Central, two names that also refer to the Parts and Repair centers.

Sears Parts & Repair: Sears service centers that typically sell parts for appliances and also a carry-in point for customers to bring merchandise in that needs repaired either in or out of warranty. They primarily concentrate on hardware, appliances, and lawn and garden supplies. They are signed as Sears, and they are usually free-standing or located in a strip mall. Sears Hardware: smaller area Sears stores that are operated as franchises; they are usually located in smaller markets that do not support a mall or full-size Sears.

The brand was reinvented in 1991 with K-Mart's launch of the Super K-Mart Center concept. They all closed in 1970s. Most Kmart Foods were together with K-Mart stores. Kmart Foods: Kmart Foods was a grocery store that was found in 1962.

Sears stores are usually multi-level, and there are about 870 full-size Sears stores. Sears: department store concept that is located in shopping malls; it carries clothing, jewelry, appliances, hardware, lawn and garden supplies, lawn mowers, paint, sporting goods and automobile repair and supplies. Several also include Kmart Express gas stations. These stores are also known as Super Kmart, Super K, and Super Kmart Center.

SuperCenters are about 140,000 to 190,000 square feet (13,000 to 18,000 m²). Super Kmart: Carries everything a regular Kmart carries, but has a full grocery section with meat, bakery, and deli. Many were changed back to plain Kmart or closed. Sears Holdings no longer builds these stores, but many Kmarts are still signed as Big Kmart or Big K.

Big Kmart stores also feature Garden Shop, and Kcafe or Little Caesar's Pizza station. About 84,000 to 120,000 square feet (7,800 to 11,000 m²). Big Kmart: Carries everything a regular Kmart carries, but with a emphasis on home decor, children's clothing, and more food items. About 84,000 to 100,000 square feet (7,800 to 9,300 m²).

Many stores also have a pharmacy and snack bar. Kmart: discount stores (usually free-standing or located in strip malls) that carry electronics, music, movies, bedding, hardware, sporting goods, clothing, toys, jewelry, office supplies, health and beauty products, home décor, and a limited selection of food. Preservation of two brands after the merger allowed Sears Holdings to continue focusing on different customer demographics, without alienating either group. The establishment of a shared customer-focused corporate culture between the two companies was estimated to yield improvements in revenue per unit area.

At least $300 million a year in cost savings was expected annually, particularly in the supply chain and in administrative overhead. This was estimated to be an expected $200 million a year in revenue synergies. Proprietary brands held by both companies could be made more accessible to their target demographics by leveraging their combined real estate holdings. Earlier in the year Sears had purchased dozens of current Kmart locations; the merger permited the combined company to accelerate that process.

Sears had begun investing in new, larger off-mall stores, called Sears Grand stores.

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