By: Rachel Clark, DanceSafe Contractor
A white “bar” pill with three score lines and “G 372 2” stamped on one side was sold in Elk Rapids, MI as Xanax (alprazolam), but actually contains exclusively six different kinds of unidentified chemicals. The sample was submitted from Elk Rapids, MI.
The sample did not react with the Marquis, Mecke, or Mandelin reagents.
Unidentified chemicals are substances whose “fingerprints” are not stored in testing databases, which often contain nearly a thousand (or more) chemical signatures for matching. This makes it impossible to identify the potential psychoactive or physical effects, toxicity profile, and risk-benefit ratio of ingesting the drug in question. For this reason, taking a pill such as this misrepresented Xanax bar could lead to any number of outcomes for the person consuming it.
Keeping this in mind, it is inherently much riskier than usual to ingest a substance that is exclusively composed of unknown chemicals. In some cases, these are research chemicals that have been produced with the explicit intention of skirting existing manufacturing laws; in others, they are inert fillers. While drug databases are constantly being updated with new chemical fingerprints to reference during the detection process, hundreds of NPS (new psychoactive substances) enter the black market each year, and many of them are so obscure that even the most advanced testing technology cannot identify them until they have risen to higher prominence.
We urge our community to keep in mind that drug markets are expansive and that this adulterated Xanax bar may appear in places other than its source and submission location. Using a reagent test kit can help provide a first line of defense as a presumptive (and not affirmative) process. Additionally, samples may be sent in to www.ecstasydata.org for in-depth laboratory testing. Test before you ingest to avoid taking misrepresented substances, and so you can adjust your intention, set, and setting appropriately to minimize risks. You can purchase your DanceSafe test kit here.
The purpose of #TestIt Alerts is to alert the public to misrepresented substances circulating in their region. We neither condemn nor condone drug use, but rather want people to be aware of what they are ingesting so they can take steps to minimize risks.
Since 1998, DanceSafe has been keeping the electronic music and nightlife communities safe. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we provide free harm reduction services at music festivals and nightlife events across the nation. All proceeds from the sales of our drug checking kits go back into the organization so we can continue to provide our services to our communities for free. By purchasing a kit, you are not only helping keep you and your friends safe, you are also contributing to the harm reduction movement. Thank you for your support!