Culver-originated meth-fighting drug will be distributed nationally

A major step forward has been announced in the potential impact of a drug developed in a Culver laboratory in an effort to aid in the ongoing battle against methamphetamine (or meth) nationwide.

Palatine, Illinois-based Accura Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced last week that Nexafed (pseudoephedrine hydrochloride, HCl), its next generation pseudoephedrine with abuse deterrent technology, will now be stocked by Rite Aid Pharmacies.

As reported in January in The Culver Citizen, Nexafed was developed in the Accura lab on State Road 17, just north of Culver, and was designed to combine effective nasal-congestion relief with a unique technology which disrupts the conversion of pseudoephedrine into meth, whose production and abuse is a growing problem in communities in Marshall County and nationwide.

Specifically, the "Impede" technology in Nexafed forms a thick gel when the tablets are dissolved in solvents typically used in the pseudoephedrine extraction or methamphetamine production processes, trapping the pseudoephedrine or converted methamphetamine to prevent its isolation or purification.

Ron Leech, Senior Director of Quality and Analytical Chemistry at Accura's Culver facility, notes there are some 4,600 Rite Aid stores nationwide.

"We are hoping that the this will pave the way for other big chains to hop on board," adds Leech, who told the Citizen in our earlier article that gaining widespread distribution of the drug has been a challenge.

"If we could get our product out there," Leech told the Citizen in January, "we wouldn't be reading about meth every day in the newspaper. We really want to make an impact on communities."