Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department / School

Chemistry and Biochemistry

First Advisor

Brian A. Logue


Aminotetrazole cobinamide, Cyanide, Dimethyl disulfide, Dimethyl trisulfide, Hydrogen sulfide, Methanethiol


Toxic inhalation agents (TIAs), (i.e., cyanide (CN) and reduced sulfur compounds (RSCs)), including hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and methanethiol (MT)) are extremely poisonous upon exposure. Many TIAs act by inhibiting mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase, resulting in cellular hypoxia, cytotoxic anoxia, apnea, respiratory failure, cardiovascular collapse, seizure and potentially death. CN is generated in structural fires and cigarette smoke as well as in mining, electroplating and polymer processing, whereas H2S and MT are found in petroleum, oil and natural gas, waste treatment facilities and decaying organic matter. All are common occupational gas exposure hazards in chemical industries and for first responders, including firefighters, and can be used as suicide, homicide, or chemical warfare agents. Despite many TIAs being on the potential terrorist threat s list and common occupational exposure hazards, there are no FDA-approved intramuscular or oral antidotes for these compounds which are effective in a mass-casualty event. Dimethyl trisulfide (DMTS) has recently gained prominence as a promising next generation CN antidote. DMTS converts CN to less toxic thiocyanate (SCN) forming dimethyl disulfide (DMDS), a relatively toxic compound as a major breakdown product. Another potential antidote, aminotetrazole cobinamide (CbiAT), which is a prodrug of cobinamide (Cbi), can directly bind and detoxify CN, H2S and MT. Both DMTS and CbiAT have significant advantages over current treatments, but there is no method available for the analysis of CbiAT in any biological matrices and the methods available for DMDS and DMTS analysis have significant disadvantages. Hence, in this study, an extremely simple and rapid dynamic headspace (DHS) gas chromatography mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) method was developed for the analysis of DMTS and DMDS from whole blood. The dynamic ranges for DMTS (0.2 – 50 μM) and DMDS (0.1 – 200 μM) were wide and the limits of detection (LODs) (40 and 30 nM, respectively) were excellent. Inter- and intraassay accuracies were within 100±15%, and the precision of

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Pulmonary toxicology.
Dimethyl sulfide.
Cyanides -- Toxicology.
Hydrogen sulfide -- Toxicology.
Methane -- Toxicology.

Number of Pages



South Dakota State University



Rights Statement

In Copyright