HEALTH

ABC’s ‘Nightline’ shadows three meth busts

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — ABC’s "Nightline: Late Evening News" on Wednesday aired an exposé on Kentucky’s methamphetamine problem, shadowing law enforcement as they made three arrests in a state that employs an electronic tracking system for the over-the-counter ingredient pseudoephedrine. The officers investigated sales made at Walgreens, CVS and Walmart.

However, deputy director Dan Smoot — who leads a task force in London, Ky., called Operation UNITE — advocated legislation that would make PSE a controlled substance in an effort to reduce the number of meth lab busts. According to Smoot, 70% of PSE products sold through retail pharmacy are converted to meth.

The news program noted that meth lab busts are down significantly in the two states where PSE is prescription-only — Oregon and Mississippi. However, those states do not employ an electronic tracking tool to assist law enforcement in identifying potential meth labs.

According to the National Precursor Log Exchange, an interstate electronic tracking system of PSE sales, 52 million grams in PSE sales have been tracked to date, and 1.6 million grams in PSE sales have been blocked, suggesting a much lower diversion rate for PSE.

For the full video, click here.


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Axia3 launches Axia3 ProDigestive antacid

BY Michael Johnsen

LOS ANGELES — Axia3 on Thursday announced the launch of its Axia3 ProDigestive antacid as a new dietary supplement that delivers relief from occasional heartburn, with a proprietary blend of potent ProDigestive enzymes to help promote healthy digestion.

"Heartburn and other digestive discomforts such as indigestion, sour stomach and bloating afflict millions of people each year," Axia3 CEO Ryan Doheny said. "In fact, more than 100 million people in the U.S. each year suffer from heartburn."

Axia3’s ProDigestive formula works by actively helping to break down protein, carbohydrates and essential fats and oils, the company stated. Axia3 currently has distribution through CVS/pharmacy, Whole Foods and Bartell Drugs at a suggested retail price of $2.99. The product is available in a number of formats including a 1.5-oz. recloseable tin of chewable minty tablets, an on-the-go roll of 12 tablets and a 45-count box of tablets.


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U.S. marshals seize supplements marketed as drugs

BY Michael Johnsen

HILLSBORO, Wis. — At the request of the Food and Drug Administration, U.S. marshals on Thursday seized all dietary supplements manufactured by Syntec because of false claims made about the safety and effectiveness of their supplements in treating a number of diseases.

The products manufactured by Syntec are not FDA-approved and a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin alleged that several of Syntec’s products are unapproved new drugs that may not be introduced into interstate commerce and are misbranded in violation of the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act.

"Marketing new drug products without FDA review or approval is dangerous because the products may cause consumers to delay or avoid legitimate treatments," FDA associate commissioner for regulatory affairs Dara Corrigan said. "The FDA is committed to protecting consumers from unapproved new drugs."

The company’s dietary supplements are sold under several brand names, including SynBio, SynOPC, BoneCare, SynBio-X, SynOPC-X, VisionCare, CardioCare, SynGevity, SynVita, SynCell, SynPhyto-K, DigestiveCare, JointCare and SynOmega.

The government alleged that the company claimed in videos and promotional materials that some of its products could be used to prevent, treat or cure such diseases as asthma, cardiovascular disease, cataracts, glaucoma and infections.

According to the complaint, the company also failed to follow the current good manufacturing practice requirements for dietary supplements, as required by federal law.

The FDA sent the company a warning letter regarding the disease claims in March 2009. During inspections in October and November 2010, June 2011 and September 2011, FDA investigators documented serious current good manufacturing practices (cGMP) violations, in addition to the company’s continued use of disease claims for some of its products.


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