Project Updates » Archives » May 2016

VWR supports PAD project

Author: Marya Lieberman

Prof. Lieberman is very pleased to report that she has received financial backing from VWR International, a global laboratory supplier and distributor of chemicals, consumables, equipment, and instruments. Through their relationship with Notre Dame, VWR is providing Prof. Lieberman with $10,000 per year of chemicals and consumables for the lab, which will support efforts to identify fake medications in Kenya and other countries in East Africa. A big thank you to VWR for their interest in and support of this important project.…

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Pathology of Negligence: Report on Batch J093

Author: Marya Lieberman

In the third week of September, 2011, a worker loaded white powders from drums and plastic bags into a mixing machine at Efonze Chemical Industries to produce Batch J093 of a drug called Isotab.  It had been ordered by a cardiac clinic in Pakistan.  One of the drums, labeled as pre-gelatinized starch, was probably filled with pyrimethamine.  A batch of this antimalarial medicine had arrived in a moldy container earlier in the month and been transferred to a blue drum, the same type of drum used to hold starch.  Perhaps no-one updated the label.  In any case, over 20 Kg of pyrimethamine was somehow added to the batch of isosorbide mononitrate.  Each heart pill that was pressed contained over 50 mg of this drug in addition to the intended active ingredient;  patients who took the heart medicine would receive doses of 100-150 mg pyrimethamine per day.    The recommended dose of pyrimethamine is just 25 mg per week.  The consequences to hundreds of Pakistanis would be devastating.  

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