NASHVILLE, Tenn., July 27, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aegis Sciences Corporation, a leading healthcare company that provides clinically innovative medication compliance testing and consulting services to providers, has launched new testing options which allow providers to test for various classes of novel psychoactive substances (NPS). Along with the addition of new drugs to Aegis’ synthetic cannabinoid and stimulant offerings, providers now have the option to test for illicit opioids, such as fentanyl analogs, and illicit benzodiazepines in urine.

Aegis is responding to the Opioid Crisis by using surveillance data to significantly update and expand its test menu in synthetic cannabinoid and stimulants and adding an extensive array of designer benzodiazepines and opioids. Aegis testing now allows practitioners the opportunity to test for over 60 of the most frequently identified NPS.

NPS are substances that are created to mimic prescription or illicit drugs, while avoiding regulation as a controlled substance. These drugs are largely of unknown composition and often adulterated, resulting in a high potential for adverse events. One of the most concerning trends in illicit drug surveillance has been the detection of potent synthetic opioids in counterfeit prescription drugs. According to the CDC, opioids were involved in approximately 70% of overdose deaths in 2018, and synthetic opioids, including fentanyl and other analogs, were involved in 2/3 of those.1, 2 “The NPS marketplace constantly adjusts to evade detection by routine drug testing methods and circumvent regulation from various agencies. One key to reliable detection is to ensure laboratory offerings are informed by current surveillance trends and updated regularly,” said Dr. Frank Basile, CEO of Aegis Sciences Corporation.

Designer benzodiazepines receive less fanfare than opioids, but are increasingly used to potentiate the effects of prescription benzodiazepines or replace them when prescription access is limited. “The FDA has identified co-ingestion of opioids and benzodiazepines as one of many combinations associated with risks of serious adverse events, including overdoses. Identification of illicit opioids and benzodiazepines gives practitioners greater insight into assessing patient risk and opportunities for timely interventions to drive improved outcomes,” said Dr. Andrew Holt, Clinical Pharmacist.

About Aegis Sciences Corporation
Founded in 1990, Aegis Sciences Corporation is a laboratory sciences company based in Nashville, Tenn., that provides science-driven testing and consulting services for clients such as healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies, professional and amateur sports organizations, leading college and university athletic programs, Fortune 500 corporations, and government agencies throughout the United States. For more information please visit http://www.aegislabs.com/.

Contact:
Minh Le
Phone Number: 615-610-0310
Email: mle@seigenthaler.com 

References:

  1. Hedegaard H, Miniño AM, Warner M. Drug Overdose Deaths in the United States, 1999–2018.pdf icon NCHS Data Brief, no 356. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2020.
  2. Wilson N, Kariisa M, Seth P, et al. Drug and Opioid-Involved Overdose Deaths—United States, 2017-2018. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2020;69:290-297.