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Alabama becomes second state to ban sale of tianeptine pills

The House unanimously passed House Bill 2, a bill that would outlaw the possession of tianeptine in Alabama.

Tianeptine (JOHN HENRY GLENN/APR)

Alabama has become the second state in the union to ban the sale of tianeptine, a compound found in Tianaa and ZaZa brands of “dietary supplements” that mimics the effects of opioids when taken in high enough doses.

The decision to add tianeptine to the Alabama Department of Public Health’s controlled substance list comes after an initial attempt in November 2020 was thwarted by Premier Manufacturing Products, the company that makes Tianaa brand pills. Premier pointed to ADPH’s not filing an economic impact statement as the reason for their filing. After a joint-dismal in court, ADPH withdrew their decision placing tianeptine on the controlled substance list, vowing to restart the rule-making process with a fresh decision in the following months.

In the time since, both Pell City and Oxford banned the sale of tianeptine in convenience stores and gas stations within city limits.

The State Committee of Public Health voted to schedule tianeptine as a Schedule II substance at its January 2021 meeting, according to a spokesperson from ADPH.

“During a public comment period, 60 comments favoring rescheduling were received, and no comments were received by businesses indicating a negative economic impact,” the spokesperson said. “The change means tianeptine is now classified as a Schedule II drug. Substances in this schedule have a high potential for abuse which may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.”

The Alabama House unanimously passed House Bill 2, a bill that would outlaw the possession of tianeptine in Alabama. It is expected to be considered by the Senate in the coming weeks.

John H. Glenn
Written By

John is a student contributor studying communications and French at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. You can contact him at [email protected] or via Twitter.

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