Nuke debuted as Scourge in Thunderbolts (1st series) #133, with his identity revealed in #136. Project: Homegrown was revealed as part of the Weapon Plus Program in New X-Men (1st series) #145.
Nuke's abilities were originally presented as chemical enhancement governed by red, white, and blue pills, prompting his catch phrase "Gimme a red." The red pills were amphetimines that boosted him up, blue pills brought him down, and white pills kept him stable between missions. Beginning with Wolverine: Origins #2, Nuke was almost completely reconstructed as a cyborg with a metal endoskeleton and an internal control pump which could be remotely triggered to chemically sedate him. The red pills were still used, but only as a placebo and additional layer of control by his handlers.