The oft quoted number for a fatal dose of nicotine is 30 to 60 mg for an adult. That sounds way too low for a fatal dose in consideration of the following:
The origin of the 30 to 60 is an "estimate" taken from a book published in the 1980s. I don't have access to the book itself to determine how they went about making this estimate.
- I have seen reports of clinical trials involving a 42 mg. nicotine patch. Nobody died.
- I have known people who, when under stress, were smoking as much as 5 packs a day. They did not die, despite the fact that theoretically this would have exposed them to about 100 mg. of nicotine.
This estimate is being used as the basis for statements that liquid containing nicotine should be banned.
This information is from Inchem.orgThe average content of nicotine per bottle, 360 mg. (20 ml x 18 mg/ml), is of concern because the fatal dose of nicotine is estimated to be 30-60 mg for adults ad 10 mg for children. Thus these
these refill bottles are extremely dangerous and should be replaced by sealed, tamper-proof, leak resistant cartridges.
Nicotine (PIM) Main risks and target organs7.2.1 Human data
The mean lethal dose has been estimated to be 30
to 60 mg (0.5-1.0 mg/kg) (Gosselin, 1988).
The lethal dose is considered to be about 10 mg
of nicotine (Arena, 1974).
7.2.2 Relevant animal data
Dog: oral LD50: 9.2 mg/kg
mouse: oral LD50: 3.3 mg/kg (RTECS, 1985-86)
rat: oral LD50: 50 mg/kg
So any chemists out there that can give comparative toxicity info? How does an LD50 for a rat usually compare to the LD50 for an adult human?