DNP: THE DANGEROUS DIET PILL

On 13th June, the Pharmaceutical Journal carried an article warning pharmacists about deaths related to diet pill 2, 4-Dinitrophenol (DNP).  In 2018, in a trial at Inner London Crown Court, Bernard Rebelo, was convicted for manslaughter after importing the chemical in 24 kg drums from China and repackaging it into capsules, making a profit of £200,000 per drum.  He insisted he had never intended that they were for human consumption and said a warning on his website indicated this.  His conviction was subsequently overturned by the Court of Appeal on a technicality and he is likely to face a retrial.  However, says the Journal, the case brought the dangers of DNP hurtling into public awareness.  The compound is illegal to sell as a food or medical product but can be sold legally as a fertiliser, wood preservative or dye, and even as a pesticide.  Unfortunately, the ACMD concluded that it would be inappropriate to control it under the Misuse of Drugs Act.  The history of DNP shows that it was first used on an industrial scale to make bombs, mixed with picric acid during WW1 to make explosives.  It was by the early 1930s being touted as a magic bullet for weight loss.  The article says that 2 minutes on Google will take you to a bodybuilding website selling 100 capsules of DNP for around £130 and recommending a DNP cycle that includes appetite suppressants and a very low carbohydrate diet as a catalyst to weight loss.  The article includes details of the symptoms and management of DNP poisoning.

https://www.pharmaceutical-journal.com/20206616.article

Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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