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Manslaughter by Fake Artesunate in Asia—Will Africa Be Next?

  • Paul N Newton mail,

    To whom correspondence should be addressed: E-mail:

  • Rose McGready,
  • Facundo Fernandez,
  • Michael D Green,
  • Manuela Sunjio,
  • Carinne Bruneton,
  • Souly Phanouvong,
  • Pascal Millet,
  • Christopher J. M Whitty,
  • Ambrose O Talisuna,
  • Stephane Proux,
  • Eva Maria Christophel,
  • Grace Malenga,
  • Pratap Singhasivanon,
  • Kalifa Bojang,
  • Harparkash Kaur,
  • Kevin Palmer,
  • Nicholas P. J Day,
  • Brian M Greenwood,
  • François Nosten,
  • Nicholas J White
  • Published: June 13, 2006
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0030197

Reader Comments (1)

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Counterfeit artemisinin derivatives and Africa

Posted by plosmedicine on 31 Mar 2009 at 00:04 GMT

Author: Paul Newton
Position: Dr
Institution: Wellcome Trust-Mahosot Hospital-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Collaboration, Microbiology Laboratory, Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, Lao PDR
Additional Authors: Michael D Green, Facundo Fernández
Submitted Date: January 30, 2007
Published Date: January 30, 2007
This comment was originally posted as a “Reader Response” on the publication date indicated above. All Reader Responses are now available as comments.

Further information has become available which we would like to report as it has public health significance. An additional two counterfeit artesunate 'types' with distinguishing features of the packaging have been found in mainland SE Asia, bringing the number of physical types to at least 14. The details of these may be found at:


...which is an updated warning sheet (dated August 2006) to that published as supplementary material to the above paper.

In addition, we would like to bring readers attention to the newspaper reports of counterfeit artesunate and dihydroartemisinin seized from ladies handbags at Lagos airport. Please see:

Yours faithfully,

Paul N Newton
Wellcome Trust-Mahosot Hospital-Oxford University Tropical Medicine Research Collaboration, Microbiology Laboratory, Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, Lao PDR & Centre for Tropical Medicine. Nuffield Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, England, UK OX3 7LJ

Michael D Green
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Road, Mailstop F12
Atlanta, GA 30333 USA

Facundo Fernández

School of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Georgia Institute of Technology
901 Atlantic Drive, NW
Atlanta, GA 30332-0400, USA

No competing interests declared.