China White

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A synthetic or ‘designer’ drug of abuse first developed as a short acting anesthetic; CW is an opioid 1,000 times more potent than morphine, and an analogue of MPPP, a neurotoxin that destroys dopaminergic neurons, resulting in severe, irreversible, progressive parkinsonism
Desired effects Rapid pain relief, euphoria
Adverse effects Parkinsonism, slowed speech, impaired gait, muscle spasms, respiratory depression; spasms of intercostal muscles may cause death
Withdrawal symptoms Similar to heroin
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References in periodicals archive ?
Scientists recently observed that a chemical compound found in synthetic heroin and other illegally manufactured opiates causes brain damage and clinical symptoms that closely match Parkinson's disease (SN: 10/5/85, p.
After several weeks of intensive medical sleuthing, it was finally determined that a clandestine chemist just outside the San Francisco Bay Area was making a synthetic heroin in his garage but had made an error in chemistry and produced the compound 1-methyl-4-phenyl-l,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine, now widely known as MPTP.
Scientists have, for the first time, observed brain damage characteristic of Parkinson's disease in individuals without any symptoms of the disorder, but who have been exposed to a cell-damaging substance--in this case, synthetic heroin.