New Synthetic Drug U-47700 Under Scrutiny for Deaths Across the U.S.

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Feb 102017


A highly potent, new synthetic drug has been added to the list of Schedule I drugs, after cases of deaths related from an overdose from using it were reported from different states in the U.S. This is an opioid analgesic known as U-47700. Developed in the 1970s by the pharmaceutical firm, The Upjohn Company, U-4 has a street name of “Pink” or “Pinkie.

This chemical substance was all over the headlines in the past months for the series of deaths from across the country, including the states of Utah, Mississippi and Michigan. As a result, around twelve states have requested for a ban of the drug.

In September last year, two 13-year old boys from the town of Park City, Utah, died after taking the drug. According to Wade Carpenter, Park City Police Chief, the cause of death of the two teenagers was acute intoxication of the U-47700 drug. This was derived from the results gathered from the medical examiner of the Utah Office.

The parents of the victims were clueless at first because not much evidence surfaced. But further down on the investigation, authorities were able access the social media accounts of the teens and discovered about the drug. It was later found out that it came from one of classmates of the teenagers who ordered it online.

It is said that some teenagers in the community ordered the drug from China and was shipped to the U.S. After a group of teenagers were questioned as part of the investigation, one teenager was charged with reckless endangerment and distribution of a controlled substance.


U-47700 Background

Created by Upjohn, the U-47700 was patented by Jacob Szmuszkivicz, a chemist, in1976. The drug was first tested on animals and it was concluded that the potency of the opioid substance was higher than morphine, albeit, it is less addictive. Originally created to be used to alleviate pain in cancer patients, injury and cancer, the drug was never tested on human beings. While it was not made available to the public, the research continued and medical journals about it were published. These journals became the basis of some drug laboratories in China and other locations for making the recreational drug with the streetname, “Pink”. This was because the journals included information on how to make the drug.

This research chemical has become a popular recreational drug because it can easily be purchased online and is relatively cheap, selling for only $30 a gram. Manufacturers are also able to get away with it because they have learned to adjust the composition of the drug that it does not match the scheduled substance.

Reported to be seven-and-a-half times more fatal than morphine, this opioid can cause respiratory distress and later, death. One person who admitted having tried U4 said that the drug gives a feeling of relaxation and laziness. But experts also warned that the potency of the substance is based on the exact measurements stated in the patent and that other manufacturers do not follow the dosage, thus, users end up coming up with a more fatal substance.

Although it is now in the Schedule I Drugs List, it is too early to consider this new recreational drug as illegal. Meanwhile, U-47700 was also said to have been found, along with Fentanyl as one of the drugs in the estate of icon singer, Prince, who died from drug overdose.




 Posted by at 10:39 am

Businessman’s LSD or DMT Hits Streets of Los Angeles

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Jun 242014

It’s called “Businessman’s LSD” or “LSD on steroids” but Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) is the drug of choice for many young users especially near college campuses. Made from mimosa root bark and solvents this hallucinogenic drug is replacing many other illicit substances in the Los Angeles, California area.

According to NBC News Los Angeles, “Dimethyltryptamine (DMT), extracted from the mimosa root bark, is a psychedelic compound that can produce brief, but vivid and powerful, hallucinations.

“DMT – known as the ‘Businessman’s LSD’ because of the short duration of the drug’s mind-altering effects – is smoked, ingested orally or injected, causing users to lose awareness of their surroundings, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. Its active chemical is found in South American plants and the drug was featured in the 2010 movie, ‘DMT: The Spirit Molecule.’”




 Posted by at 9:59 am

Synthetic Marijuana Linked to Deaths

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Sep 062013

A synthetic pot probe is underway concerning three recent deaths and at least 75 hospital emergency room visits in Colorado. The fake marijuana is sold in some convenience stores in packets of herbal supplements. This herbal packets have been sprayed with chemicals that will give smokers a high.

According to the Denver Post, “The CDC is sending four people to help with the epidemiological probe, which will look at medical charts of patients reporting the symptoms and study toxicology results …

… The announcement comes after metro Denver emergency rooms have seen a surge of new cases they attribute to the material, which often comes in teabag-size packets under names like Spice or Black Mamba. The illegal drugs are usually pieces of dried herb sprayed with synthetic chemicals that can mimic the effects of marijuana without leaving a THC trace in urine samples.”


 Posted by at 4:45 pm

Convenience Stores Saying No to Bath Salts

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May 132013

Here’s a common sense story that shows a grass roots movement to educate convenience store owners about the dangers that bath salts pose to the community. While Ohio is in the process of making bath salts (the ones that people are using to get a drug high) illegal, other communities have turned to education.

According to the Crestview News Bulletin, “A majority of Okaloosa County’s convenience stores reportedly has joined an effort to combat synthetic cocaine sales.

“Sixty of some 80 convenience stores, including area Tom Thumb stores, have accepted the ‘Gold Star’ retailer designation, declining to sell so-called bath salts.

“They can display a ‘Sheriff’s Gold Star Retailer’ placard, which features the warning, ‘Synthetic drugs kill’ in large letters.”

This shows that it is important to go at the drug problem from different angles including legislative, law enforcement and educational at the same time.

 Posted by at 4:28 pm
Nov 152012

Makers of synthetic drugs and packaged them as bath salts may now get stiffer penalties in Ohio. Attorney General Mike DeWine wants to go after the makers, sellers and users of so-called bath salts which in effect if ingested act like a hit of both methamphetamines and hallucinogens.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, “Ohio has had a synthetic-drug law on the books since last year, but chemists who make the drug compounds have found ways around it by simply tweaking the chemical compound to make it slightly different — and legal. The new proposal would make the base compounds illegal, regardless of chemical modifications …

“…Dr. Dennis Mann of Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton said the hospital began seeing an increase in patients using bath salts and other synthetic drugs about two years ago. He said sometimes the hospital emergency room would be inundated with ‘combative, out-of-control, fairly psychotic people’ who posed a danger to emergency medical technicians and hospital personnel.”

Over the past few years there has been an epidemic of bath salts being sold and used as drugs nationwide. A study over the summer suggests that bath salts may be as addictive as cocaine.

 Posted by at 2:46 pm

Bath Salts Being Used for Stimulants According to Drug Czar

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Feb 152011

Just when you thought that taking a nice, long hot bath was a relaxing experience, think again. According to U. S. White House appointed Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske the buying of some bath salts is being used for people to achieve an amphetamine-like high.

Two substances found in some bath salts called MDPV and mephedrone are being called ‘designer drugs’ by police since there are no laws governing their sale or use, yet they give similar effects to illicit drugs and have been linked to deaths across the U. S.

These two substances are unlicensed and unregulated in most states though some states such as Hawaii, Louisiana and Michigan have started to crack down on their usage. Europe and Australia have already seen these bath salt substances spread like wildfire with many deaths associated with ingestion.

Because the molecular structure of these “bath salts” is slightly different that illicit and banned substances, manufacturers have been getting away with selling these designer drugs under names like bath salts, plant food, or research chemicals.

Australia and New Zealand have banned many of these designer drugs based upon chemical structure, so that any substance that is substantially similar to an illicit drug on a molecular level is banned. The U. S. has yet to catch up on this kind of crackdown.

 Posted by at 4:24 pm