Cancer induction

edited January 2016 in Everything else
So the evil scientist side of my brain wonders how easy it would be to cause cancer with a high likelihood.

It's always mentioned in any thread that brings up DNA modification, but could you make a pill or injection that had a serious increase in cancer risk? I'm talking about almost certain cancer, like someone would use to slowly assassinate someone.

I don't ACTUALLY want to do this, I'm just curious.


  • Yeah, anything with small radioactive particles in it, like a suspension of finely ground thorium (from e.g. lantern mantles if you want to DIY it) Hopefully some of the particles end up decaying and triggering a mutation that leads to cancer.

    The thing is, it's probabilistic. If you want to  assassinate someone and you have them in a position where they'll take pills or an injection from you, there's any number of things that you could do that would be more certain.

    ...why the fuck do I know this off the top of my head.
  • You don't get much more "natural causes" than a death from cancer, and anything non-radioactive you could use would probably exit the body long before death.
  • I wonder if you could place thorium in like say a salt/pepper shaker.... Fearly large repeated doesages, that would make a good book, that would make a dame good book.... Something about me y'all don't know about me is I have a weird thing for cereal crimes and there methodology. People tell me I will end up writing crime novels or go bat shit crazy....

    John Doe
  • edited January 2016
    Not to kill the thorium idea, but thorium kinda builds up in your bones. Your body treats it like calcium, and it WILL show up in an autopsy. It's not common enough for it to be an accident either.
  • I'm thinking more like a uv laser sniper apparatus. If you use the radioactive chemicals, you get cancer, sure, but also signs of radioactive poisoning...
  • But wouldn't that leave little burns comparable to sunburns?
  • Radiation poisoning is more from acute doses (criticality incidents, Russians served you polonium in your tea) than from e.g. lantern mantle ash in your salt shaker. But of course, any dose small enough to have minimal or unnoticed side effects might also not work.

    If it doesn't have to be cancer, injecting calcium gluconate or potassium chloride (30mg/kg iv) can cause a heart attack.

    Maybe get your victim interested in cigars?
  • edited January 2016
    I don't know if you know anything about the side-effects of injecting those (aside from death), but if you're taking down an average target, that's a lot of fluid to inject. And it causes excruciating pain, which is why they administer sedatives and paralytic drugs to keep you from twitching all over the place during lethal injections, because of the effects those drugs have on other muscles. I won't say that assassinations are by any means ethical, but out of the possible ways of going about it, this is on par with torturing someone to death.

    If you're going the injection route, use a short-lived virus designed to do some RNA interference. Or just plasmids. We keep talking about accidentally causing super-cancer in other threads, so it makes sense that it'd be bloody easy to do it with these methods. More specifically, target tumor-suppressant genes and lysosomes. Or anything involved with DNA transcription. Instant, repetitive DNA breaks without anything to eliminate the bad code. Or you make the person immortal. But cancer is more likely. 
  • That was what I was specifically curious about, since it keeps coming up in other threads. I was curious about how hard it would be to royally fuck someone's DNA. Everyone just immediately went for the radiation route.
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