Detecting Fake Drugs With A Piece Of Paper

The developing world is awash in substandard or falsified medications, which can directly harm users or deprive them of needed treatment. With internet sales of medications on the rise, people everywhere are increasingly at risk. A team of researchers from the University of Notre Dame has developed a simple, inexpensive paper-based device to screen suspicious medications. To screen for a variety of potential quality issues, the researchers included 12 lanes separated by wax barriers on the paper device. Each lane contained a different set of reagents to detect materials or functional groups found in active pharmaceutical ingredients, degradation products, or common fillers.