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Back To Vidyya New Test For Detection Of Ecstasy And Other Amphetamines Receives FDA Market Clearance

Test Can Detect 2.5 Micrograms Of The Drug Per Milliliter Of Urine

Beckman Coulter, Inc. has announced that it has received 510(k) clearance from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market a new test for the detection of ecstasy and other amphetamines.

Beckman Coulter's amphetamine test - performed on urine samples using the company's Synchron Cx® Or Lx® clinical chemistry systems - is one of the most sensitive tests for ecstasy available and can detect 2.5 micrograms of the drug per milliliter of urine. In addition to ecstasy, the test can detect an array of methamphetamines and amphetamines that are commonly abused and can cause addiction.

More formally known as 3-4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), ecstasy is also called E, X, XTC and Adam. It is used most frequently at dance clubs and all-night dance parties called "raves."

Clinical studies have indicated that use of the drug carries dangerous side effects, including hallucination, confusion, agitation, seizure, hypotension, coma, brain damage and even death. Despite the dangers, recreational use of ecstasy has risen dramatically in recent years, prompting the DEA to classify the drug under "Schedule 1," which makes it subject to criminal penalties similar to those for other drugs of abuse, such as cocaine and heroin.

"With use of ecstasy on the rise - especially among teenagers - and the widespread use of other drugs of abuse, it's critical that physicians and laboratorians have access to a highly sensitive test like our new amphetamine assay," said Ron Berman, Beckman Coulter market manager, clinical chemistry and automation.

"The test is designed to detect amphetamines quickly and accurately in a wide range of clinical lab situations, such as emergency room toxicology. The test can also be used in forensic testing as well as to screen for drug use in employees, athletes, prison populations and drug rehab participants."

In addition to its new amphetamine assay, Beckman Coulter offers a number of tests for the detection and monitoring of other drugs of abuse, including cocaine, marijuana, opiate, PCP, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, methadone, methaqualone and proxyphene. The entire panel of tests is available on the company's Synchron Cx Or Lx systems.


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Editor: Susan K. Boyer, RN
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