Acura Pharmaceuticals introduces PSE product that will be less attractive to 'meth cooks'

PALATINE, Ill. — Acura Pharmaceuticals in December will launch an immediate-release pseudoephedrine tablet under the brand name Nexafed that will help impede conversion of the tablets into methamphetamine. Couched as the "next generation pseudoephedrine product," Nexafed is a 30-mg PSE hydrochloride tablet that utilizes Acura's trademarked Impede technology. 

When using the "shake-and-bake" or "one-pot" method, the Impede technology yields approximately half as much methamphetamine as compared to a traditional PSE product — or 38% of the maximum possible pure methamphetamine out of each tablet — and consequently makes use of the cold medicine by "meth cooks" less profitable.

For other methods of baking meth out of PSE tablets, which require isolating the pseudoephedrine from the cold tablets, the Impede technology yields no usable pseudoephedrine. 

The brand is being positioned as the "higher road" option, where purchase of the brand is driven by reducing the appeal of PSE products sold at retail to criminals. "This is a high-recommendation category," noted Acura CEO Bob Jones. "When the pharmacist gets behind a product like Nexafed … that message will translate into product sales."

Eventually, Acura plans to file with the Drug Enforcement Agency for an exemption from the requirement that PSE products be sold behind the pharmacy counter. That would place a PSE product back on store shelves for the first time in seven years. Launching now will help Acura build a case of real-life positive outcomes, Jones told DSN. "We think that will [generate] the most impactful data that we can provide to regulators."

Impede Technology utilizes a proprietary mixture of inactive ingredients that forms a viscous, gelatinous mixture when dissolved in solvents typically used in the PSE extraction or methamphetamine production processes and trapping the PSE or converted methamphetamine to prevent its isolation or purification. The unique mixture of inactive ingredients in Nexafed is generally recognized as safe by the FDA.

Nexafed will be line-priced inline with other PSE tablet products.


- 5:09 PM
MikeBudd says

I didn't know about this product. I have heard about Zephrex-D from Highland Pharmaceuticals, using the Tarex formulation process which makes it quite impossible to be turned into methamphetamine: Are these products similar? Is it the same formulation process? Same effectiveness for cold, allergy and asthma? Did Acura Pharmaceuticals get this exemption? In all cases I find it very promising: first it will hopefully reduce the number of meth labs and second it will force the industry to switch to this new generation meth-resistant products. Cheers, Mike

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