Police in Alberta are warning residents about W-18, a powerful opioid 100 times stronger than fentanyl, discovered during a drug bust last summer.
Calgary police said 110 fentanyl pills were seized from a home in Rocky View County in southern Alberta in August.
In December, tests from Health Canada confirmed three pills contained W-18.
“It’s an ongoing concern based on the fact W-18 is 100 times more toxic than fentanyl,” Martin Schiavetta, a staff sergeant with the Calgary Police Service Drug Unit, told Global News. “And we already know the deadly consequences fentanyl has.”
Where does W-18 come from?
The drug comes from a “W-series” of opioid compounds first discovered at the University of Alberta in 1982, according to the B.C. Centre for Disease Control. There are 32 compounds, W-1 to W-32, with W-18 being the most toxic.