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Suppliers linked to impure heparin

The Wall Street Journal, February 23, 2012

The Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday it found 14 additional Chinese companies supplied contaminated raw material to make heparin, a widely used blood thinner. The companies supplied the materials in 2008, when the FDA found a link between contaminated heparin marketed by Baxter International Inc. to some Chinese suppliers of the active ingredient used in heparin. The contamination was linked to 80 deaths in U.S. patients and hundreds of allergic reactions. The same contamination was found in heparin sold by other pharmaceutical companies in other countries. An estimated 12 million Americans use heparin each year.