Canadian company develops test for animal tranquilizer in street drugs — but it’s not available in Canada – CBC

100,000 tests sent to the U.S. as company awaits Health Canada approval

Mar 31, 2023

A Canadian biotech company has developed new test strips to detect the dangerous animal tranquillizer xylazine in the highly toxic street drug supply — but while the strips are already shipping across the U.S., Canada hasn’t yet approved the potentially lifesaving tool.

Xylazine, also known as “tranq,” “tranq dope” or “zombie drug,” is a severely potent veterinary tranquillizer typically used as a sedative in large farm animals such as horses that is being cut with opioids like fentanyl to prolong their effects.

The sedative is not approved for use in humans in Canada and its long-term effects on human health are unknown, but it can cause hours-long blackouts, and studies have shown those who inject drugs that contain xylazine may develop horrific, painful wounds or lesions that can lead to amputation if left untreated.

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