Inspections, Compliance, Enforcement, and Criminal Investigations

Economax LLC 5/6/16

  

Department of Health and Human Services logoDepartment of Health and Human Services

Public Health Service
Food and Drug Administration
 New York District
158-15 Liberty Ave.
Jamaica, NY 11433-1034
Telephone:      718-340-7000
Facsimile:        718-662-5661

 

May 6, 2016
 
WARNING LETTER NYK-2016-33
 
UNITED PARCEL SERVICE
DELIVERY SIGNATURE REQUESTED
 
 
Mr. Ilya Bangiyev
Economax, LLC
138-25A 77th Avenue
Flushing, NY 11367
 
 
Dear Mr. Bangiyev:
 
This letter concerns products that your firm distributes to consumers via your website, http://superpowerkhanusa.com. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has obtained a sample and labeling of your product, “Super Power Khan.” As described below, this product is an unapproved new drug sold in violation of sections 505(a) and 301(d) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) [21 U.S.C. §§ 355(a) and 331(d)]. Furthermore, the product is a misbranded drug under section 502 of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 352] and sold in violation of section 301(a) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 331(a)]. 
 
FDA confirmed through laboratory analysis that a sample of your “Super Power Khan” contains the undeclared active pharmaceutical ingredients sildenafil and hydroxyhomosildenafil, both of which are phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors.  Sildenafil is the active ingredient in the FDA-approved prescription drug Viagra, used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). Hydroxyhomosildenafil is a substance structurally similar to sildenafil.  These undeclared ingredients may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs such as nitroglycerin and may lower blood pressure to dangerous levels.  Men with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart disease often take nitrates.
 
You market “Super Power Khan” as a dietary supplement.  However, under section 201(ff)(3)(B)(i) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(ff)(3)(B)(i)], a dietary supplement may not include an article that is approved as a new drug under section 505 of the FD&C Act unless that article was marketed as a dietary supplement or food before its approval as a drug. FDA approved Viagra (containing sildenafil as the active ingredient) as a new drug on March 27, 1998.  Given that sildenafil was not marketed as a dietary supplement or as a food before Viagra was approved, “Super Power Khan,” which contains sildenafil, is excluded from the definition of a dietary supplement under section 201(ff)(3)(B)(i) of the FD&C Act.
 
Unapproved New Drug
 
“Super Power Khan” is a drug as defined by section 201(g)(1) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(g)(1)] because it is intended to prevent, treat, or cure disease conditions and/or affect the structure or function of the body. Labeling statements documenting the intended uses of “Super Power Khan” include, but are not limited to, the following:
 
From your website, http://superpowerkhanusa.com:
  • “Helps men suffering from erectile dysfunction, prostate problems and premature ejaculation.” 
Your “Super Power Khan” is also a new drug under section 201(p) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(p)], because it is not generally recognized as safe and effective under the conditions prescribed, recommended, or suggested in its labeling. Under sections 301(d) and 505(a) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. §§ 331(d) and 355(a)], a new drug may not be introduced or delivered for introduction into interstate commerce unless an FDA-approved application is in effect for it. Your marketing and distribution of “Super Power Khan” without an approved application violates these provisions of the FD&C Act.
 
Misbranded Drug
 
Your “Super Power Khan” also is misbranded under section 502(f)(1) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 352(f)(1)] in that the labeling for this drug fails to bear adequate directions for use. “Adequate directions for use” means directions under which a layman can use a drug safely and for the purposes for which it is intended [21 CFR § 201.5].  All PDE-5 inhibitors which have been approved for marketing by FDA are limited by an approved new drug application to use under the supervision of a practitioner licensed by law to administer such drugs. Prescription drugs can be used safely only at the direction, and under the supervision, of a licensed practitioner. Therefore, it is impossible to write “adequate directions for use” for prescription drugs. “Super Power Khan” is not exempt from the requirements that its labeling bear adequate directions for use by a layperson [21 U.S.C. §§ 201.100(c)(2) and 201.115] because there is no FDA-approved application in effect for this product. For these reasons, “Super Power Khan” is misbranded under section 502(f)(1) of the FD&C Act.
 
Additionally, under section 502(a) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 352(a)], a drug is misbranded if its labeling is false or misleading in any particular.  Section 201(n) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(n)], provides that, in determining whether an article's labeling or advertising “is misleading there shall be taken into account . . . not only representations made or suggested . . . but also the extent to which the labeling or advertising fails to reveal facts material in light of such representations . . ..” The labeling for “Super Power Khan” does not declare that it contains sildenafil and hydroxyhomosildenafil. The failure to disclose the presence of sildenafil and hydroxyhomosildenafil in the product’s labeling renders “Super Power Khan” misbranded under section 502(a) of the FD&C Act. The presence of undeclared PDE-5 inhibitors contained in your product may pose serious health risks because consumers with underlying medical issues may take this product without knowing that it can cause serious harm or interact in dangerous ways with other drugs they may be taking. For example, PDE-5 inhibitors may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin) and can lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. Consumers with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart disease often take nitrates. Those consumers who have been advised against taking PDE-5 inhibitors because of comorbidities or potential drug interactions may seek products like “Super Power Khan” because it is marketed as a dietary supplement.
 
The undeclared sildenafil and hydroxyhomosildenafil in “Super Power Khan” also cause this product to be misbranded under section 502(f)(2) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 352(f)(2)] in that the product’s labeling lacks adequate warnings for the protection of users. As previously noted, there is potential for adverse events associated with the use of PDE-5 inhibitors. Consumers who use “Super Power Khan” would be unaware of the presence of the undeclared drug ingredients and placed at risk for their associated adverse events. 
 
The introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce of this misbranded drug product is a prohibited act under section 301(a) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. §331(a)].
 
FDA has also reviewed your website at www.powerkhanusa.com and documented that you offer the product “Power Khan” for sale to consumers in the United States. Previous FDA laboratory analyses of “Power Khan” from other distributors found that this product contains the undeclared ingredients sildenafil and thiosildenafil[1] (see Power Khan Public Notification).  
 
While the Agency has not tested and sampled “Power Khan” from your inventory to date, this letter is to express our serious concern about the safety of this product and emphasize that it is your legal responsibility under federal law to ensure that it does not contain any undeclared and potentially harmful ingredients.  
 
A full list of all tainted products discovered by FDA can be found at http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/sda/sdNavigation.cfm?sd=tainted_supplements_cder.
 
The issues and violations cited in this letter are not intended to be an all-inclusive statement of violations that exist in connection with your products. You are responsible for investigating and determining the causes of the violations identified above and for preventing their recurrence or the occurrence of other violations. It is your responsibility to ensure that your firm complies with all requirements of federal law and FDA regulations, and to ensure that all products you manufacture or distribute are in compliance with the FD&C Act and all of its implementing regulations and all other requirements of federal law. You should take prompt action to correct the violations cited in this letter. Failure to implement lasting corrective action of violations may result in legal action without further notice, including, without limitation, seizure, injunction, and/or prosecution.
 
You should notify this office in writing within fifteen (15) working days from your receipt of this letter of the current status of your corrective actions and the specific steps you have taken to correct the noted violations. In your response, please include an explanation of each step being taken to prevent the recurrence of violations, as well as copies of related documentation. If you cannot complete all corrections before you respond, you should explain the reason for the delay and include a timetable for the implementation of any remaining corrections. Please send your written response to the Food and Drug Administration; Attention:
 
CDR Frank Verni, R.Ph.
Compliance Officer
U. S. Food and Drug Administration
158-15 Liberty Avenue, Room 4050
Jamaica, NY 11433
 
If you have any questions about the content of this letter please contact CDR Verni at (718) 662-5702 or at frank.verni@fda.hhs.gov.
 
Sincerely,
/S/ 
Ronald M. Pace
District Director
New York District


[1] Thiosildenafil is a PDE-5 inhibitor that is structurally similar to sildenafil.  As previously stated, PDE-5 inhibitors may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin) and can lower blood pressure to dangerous levels.

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