Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Article highlights counterfeit medicine debate

Date:
September 12, 2012
Source:
Maney Publishing
Summary:
A new article highlights the current debate surrounding the under-investigated, and politically sensitive, issue of counterfeit medicine.

The latest issue of Pathogens and Global Health highlights the current debate surrounding the under-investigated, and politically sensitive, issue of counterfeit medicine. Issue 106.2 includes an interview with Dr Paul Newton, Head of the Laos arm of the Wellcome Trust's Major Overseas Programmes, and a number of articles highlighting the technological innovations and field initiatives that are challenging this threat to global health.

Related Articles


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 10% of prescription drugs sold worldwide are counterfeit; the packaging may be almost identical but the ingredients within the product are often absent or at lower dose than stated, or the product has been contaminated with other dangerous ingredients such as arsenic, heavy metals, pesticide, ink, and leaded paints.

In his interview, Dr Newton explains the important differences between substandard and falsified (or counterfeit) medicines, and how controversy over the definition of these terms is slowing down progress in combating them. These terms are important as accurate reporting enables an understanding of the epidemiology of medicine quality and guides interventions. After two years of debate a WHO Member State mechanism has been formed to try to tackle these issues.

Dr Newton states in his interview: "Whether the new WHO Member State mechanism will be able to improve the current situation remains to be seen. It will need to take rapid action if the public health of vulnerable patients is to be protected."

He then goes on to comment on the consequences of falsified medicines being used in developing countries, including increased morbidity, increased health expenditure, and loss of confidence in health systems and pharmaceuticals. Additionally, anti-infective medicines containing inadequate amounts of the stated active ingredient will engender drug resistance. The WHO reports that 30% of countries have no drug regulation, or a capacity that hardly functions. Dr Newton states that more investment in Medicine Regulatory Authorities (MRAs) is required to reduce the number of errors occurring during the production of pharmaceutical products, and to allow essential medicines to be analysed within the poorer countries themselves.

It is believed that resolution can be found by implementing strict preventative measures transnationally, as well as taking action to reduce profits for counterfeiters. There will always be opportunities for the falsified medicine trade to flourish if medicine regulation, enforcement and manufacturing capacity building are not implemented.

Professor Andrea Crisanti, editor of Pathogens and Global Health, says in his editorial: "From a smuggler's standpoint, counterfeit medicine is great business. It is extremely remunerative; estimates suggest that it generates a 400-fold return on investment which is much higher than that of heroin traffic."

However, technology is making a significant impact in combating counterfeit medicine. This issue features an open-access report on the Worldwide Antimalarial Resistance Network (WWARN) AQ Surveyor, which is a database of more than 200 studies that report on antimalarial drug quality, describing the location, and the type of drug and its quality, in the hope that it will enhance the availability of information and stimulate action. It also features an article on various anti-counterfeit tools and devices; measures such as Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), mobile screening kits, and nanoencrypted tablets.

Access the free Editorial, Interview and WWARN article, plus the rest of this issue online at www.ingentaconnect.com/content/maney/pgh/2012/00000106/00000002


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Maney Publishing. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Maney Publishing. "Article highlights counterfeit medicine debate." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912125328.htm>.
Maney Publishing. (2012, September 12). Article highlights counterfeit medicine debate. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912125328.htm
Maney Publishing. "Article highlights counterfeit medicine debate." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912125328.htm (accessed February 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 27, 2015) A dongle that plugs into a Smartphone mimics a lab-based blood test for HIV and syphilis and can detect the diseases in 15 minutes, say researchers. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) An Italian doctor is saying he could stick someone&apos;s head onto someone else&apos;s body. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) reports. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

Newsy (Feb. 27, 2015) A new study from researchers at New York University suggests dentists could soon use blood samples taken from patients&apos; mouths to test for diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) If you&apos;re looking to boost your health this season, there are a few quick and easy steps to prompt you for success. Krystin Goodwin (@Krystingoodwin) has the best tips to give your health a makeover this spring! Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins