NHS Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Undermined By Counterfeit Drugs

DataLase® PHARMAMARK(tm) Provides a Solution with On-Tablet Marking

Widnes, Cheshire, (PresseBox) - Following a five-year investigation into the supply of counterfeit drugs over the internet, Operation Stormgrand concluded last month with the sentencing of Ashish Halai to four and a half years' imprisonment, at Kingston Crown Court. The operation found Halai guilty of bringing fake lifestyle medicines worth £millions into the UK from Asia both for sale and re-export. This case, and the announcement of counterfeit medicines being prescribed in the UK's NHS, has highlighted the growing trend in counterfeit drugs entering the pharmaceutical supply chain, into OTC pharmacies and for sale via the internet.

It is possible for pharmaceutical organizations to track and trace their products securely through the supply chain, by investing in anti-counterfeit measures. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) introduced stricter controls of pharmaceutical packaging and labeling to prevent administration errors with medicines. The FDA rule requires that human drug and biological product labels contain numbers that allow healthcare professionals to administer the correct drug, in the right dose, to the right patient at the right time. That number also allows the drug to be tracked through the manufacturing process. However, these rules apply only to the packaging, which can be tampered with.

Widnes-based DataLase has invented a new patented laser marking solution for on-tablet marking that ensures the drug itself is marked using anti-counterfeit techniques. A new edible on-tablet technique allows information to be recorded directly on to the tablet, irreversibly. Product identification numbers and markings (human readable or barcodes), unique product logos, patient details, dosage information, use by dates and unique numerical serializing can all be applied directly onto the tablet, ensuring no two tablets are identical, and fully traceable.

DataLase's patented additives can be incorporated onto pharmaceutical or nutritional supplement tablets via film coatings. The patented additive induces a color change in the film coating precisely at locations on the tablet surface exposed to a laser. DataLase PHARMAMARK additives are excipients that meet all appropriate compendial and regulatory requirements.

Steve Kelly, CEO of DataLase comments: "The case today of 5000 fake heart drugs infiltrating the NHS supply chain has highlighted the need for more effective anti-counterfeiting measures. Our products provide a unique solution to this very frightening example."

Steve is available for interviews and to give an insight to the problem.

DataLase Ltd

DataLase, the originator of the award-winning DataLase® process, is a fast growing technology company, providing patented, innovative laser marking solutions across a diverse range of sectors. With its headquarters in Widnes, UK, DataLase also has a significant US operation based in Atlanta, Georgia. The patented DataLase® process is suitable for applications including product identification and anti-counterfeiting. The company's product range incorporates specialist solutions for primary and secondary packaging, as well as alternatives to print-and-apply labels. DataLase is also developing applications such as direct tablet and food marking as well as full color printing for the future.

Head Office: DataLase, Unit 3, Wheldon Road, Widnes, Cheshire WA8 8FW US Office: DataLase Inc., 30 Technology Parkway South, Suite 300, Norcross, GA 30092

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