Illegal and illegal drugs, by definition, should be hard to come by, right? Unfortunately, the reality is completely opposite; just visit Amazon, one of the largest marketplaces for illegal or illegal drugs masquerading as nutritional supplements.
Looking for steroids? There are many options. New stimulant compounds that the FDA and other international bodies consider illegal and proven to be harmful; no problem, they are in stock. What about new drugs that are not yet approved for human consumption? You can of course get them too. We investigate some striking examples of illegal and potentially dangerous connections available on Amazon today
Steroids have been a problem for consumers and athletes for decades. The development of pharmaceutical steroids came to a head in the 1960s, when, after evaluating its safety and toxicity, a handful of steroids such as stanozolol and nandrolone were approved for human use.
Since the proliferation of hidden prohormones, designer steroids or steroids, has entered the dietary supplement market and has tested positive for drugs in sports. Unlike approved steroids, the safety, toxicity, and approved dosage of such compounds are unknown, and some, especially 17-alpha-methylated steroids such as Superdrol, have proven toxic and dangerous. The drug caused liver failure and a positive drug test for NCAA athlete Jareem Gunter in 2005.
After the BALCO scandal in 2003, which exposed the doping shoots of Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery and Barry Bonds, it attracted attention. Steroids like “THG” and “Madol” were in his heart. President George W. Bush settled on steroids in his 2004 Address to the Union. Later that year, Bush signed into law the Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 2004, which was strengthened with the passage of the Anabolic Steroid Control Act in 2012.
The FDA took noticeable action in a highly publicized raid in November 2009. As part of one of the largest regulatory actions to date, the FDA has identified 65 illegal steroid products on the market that contained five Superdrol steroid compounds. Madol, Tren, Androstenedion and / or Turinabol. In 2012, this case with Bodybuilding resulted in a $ 7 million fine.
Unfortunately, Amazon did not heed the 2004 presidential message on the state of the art, nor the legal regulations in the anabolic steroid control laws, nor the FDA’s outstanding action against Bodybuilding
Surprisingly, in January 2011, we noted on our blog that the products that the FDA raided in 2009 were still available on Amazon, namely CEL M- Drol which contained “Superdrol” Superdrol). also known as methasterone, has the scientific name 2α, 17α-dimethyl-5α-androstan-3-one-17β-ol). The Washington Post reported this story on January 19, 2011, after which many other news outlets emerged. At the Catlin Consortium, we hoped that by disclosing this issue, Amazon would receive a notification that would allow the company to responsibly address the issue.
This did not happen. Instead, the CEL M-Drol remained available on Amazon on September 10, 2013. It has since mysteriously disappeared from the site after we added the link to the industry presentation at the end of September. Superdrol, however, continues to appear in another product called M-Stane, which lists a compound on the label called 2a-17a-dimethyl-5a-androst-3-one-17b-ol.
M-Stein is just the tip of the iceberg. As of October 20, there were still two products available on Amazon that were raided by the FDA in 2009; Kilo Sports Trenadrol and Purus Labs Nasty Mass. A search for “prohormones” on Amazon on October 20 yielded 125 products. Many likely contain steroids or related substances.
But the problem doesn’t stop with steroids. Dangerous new stimulants like methylhexanamine and methamphetamine analogues that appear as pre-workout supplements remain available on Amazon Of particular concern are the original Jack3D from USP Labs and Craze from Driven Sports.
Jack3D has become one of the most popular pre-workout add-ons on the market over the past few years. The original version contained the now infamous methylhexanamine stimulant known in the industry as DMAA, geranamine, geranium oil extract, and other names. Patrick Arnold, chemist at BALCO, filed a patent for a compound called geranamine and included it in his pre-workout product.
The drug has become a huge problem for athletes. Surprisingly, since 2008, more than 758 positive drug tests for methylhexanamine have been reported in World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) laboratories when the first positive result was named. The drug was not banned in 2008. It was added to the WADA Prohibited List in 2009. In 2012 alone, there were 320 positive test results, which is 7.1% of the total 4,500 WADA findings this year, behind only testosterone (T / E, 1,202 results) and marijuana (398 results).
Several manufacturers have defended methylhexanamine, claiming it was an extract of geranium oil and therefore naturally occurring and present in food prior to 1994, which would make it legal under the definition of an ingredient in the Food Health and Education Act additives 1994. However, the natural origin of DMAA used in supplements has proven unfounded, and the FDA has been challenging its legality and safety for several years and believes the synthetic compound is an illegal ingredient.
Of prime importance is the possibility that the connection could cause serious harm and even death. Sadly, Jack3D was involved in the death of Claire Squires running in the 2012 London Marathon.
USP Labs has since reformulated the product and g removed the DMAA like other manufacturers. Despite considerable attention and health risks, the original version of Jack3D is still available on Amazon.A new Advanced Formula Jack3D is also available, which is sold in different ways, which suggests that the difference between the two products is known None of them contain information about the ingredients on the website.
Craze is one of the second generation pre-workout products that began to proliferate when authorities turned to methylhexanamine. It was the new addition of the year to Bodybuilding in 2012. The Craze label says it contains Dendrobex ™, a trademark of dendrobium, orchids. The label suggests that some of the suspect compounds are components of Dendrobex ™: N, N-diethyl-B-phenylethylamine and N, N-dimethyl-B-phenylethylamine, a CAS registered compound that is 0.004 mass units from methamphetamine. Ultimately, the compound present in Craze has been shown to be analogous to methamphetamine, N, α-diethylphenylethylamine, without any known natural presence.
USA Today, with its comprehensive report on Craze and its manufacturer Driven Sports, has received significant response from retailers in the supplement industry. Giants such as Wal-Mart, eBay and Bodybuilding recently launched a product, but not Amazon As of October 20, Craze remained available from 8 Amazon sellers.
We conclude with perhaps the most striking example of all when it comes to a new category of drugs in development called Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators, or SARMs for short. SARMs are medications that act like steroids by activating androgen receptors in the body. SARMs are a relatively new category of drugs, and therefore many compounds are still under development and clinical trials to assess toxicity and safety. One such drug is ostarine, which is being developed for the treatment of muscle wasting associated with cancer by a company called GT-X called Enobosarm, GTx-024 and MK-2866.
No need to wait for approval, it looks like Ostarine is already on sale in dietary supplements on Amazon, IronMagLabs OstaRx and Cutting Edge Labs OstaMax are names that suggest the new SARM is an ingredient. The shortcut for OstaMax posted on Amazon is astounding: “FOR SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH ONLY, NOT FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION” and yet there is a one capsule a day offer! The scientific name is Ostarine, as well as the MK-2866 designation used by the GT-X. Positive drug tests have already been seen, with a female cyclist testing positive for Ostarine in June and WADA reporting five SARMs overall in 2012.
Amazon’s mission is to “be the most customer-centric company on Earth, where customers can find and discover anything they want to buy online.” We hope that steroids, stimulants, drugs not approved for human consumption, and other potentially dangerous drugs were not the goal of this mission. Creating a market for illicit compounds masquerading as food additives in the face of international scrutiny, consumer health concerns, and serious adverse events seems to run counter to customer focus. At least it’s dangerous and irresponsible.
Global marketplaces like Amazon help set preferences for a variety of foods, including dietary supplements. We hope Amazon becomes a real part of the solution, choosing to eliminate these dangerous products instead of continuing to perpetuate their distribution.