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Ricin is a lectin (a carbohydrate-binding protein) and a highly potent toxin produced in the seeds of the castor oil plant, Ricinus communis. A dose of purified ricin powder the size of a few grains of table salt can kill an adult human. The median lethal dose (LD50) of ricin for mice is around 22 micrograms per kilogram of body weight via intraperitoneal injection. Oral exposure to ricin is far less toxic. An estimated lethal oral dose in humans is approximately 1 milligram per kilogram.

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