- Associated Press - Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Food and Drug Administration is investigating fake vials of the cancer drug Avastin that may have been sold to doctors in three states. In recent years the agency has warned the public about several pharmaceutical counterfeiting cases:

Jan. 2011 _ U.S. prosecutors convict a Belgium man of operating an online pharmacy that sold $1.4 million in counterfeit drugs, including fake erectile dysfunction medicine Viagra.

June 2010 _ FDA warns patients about fake versions of the flu medicine Tamiflu sold online. The tablets actually contained an ingredient related to penicillin, which some patients are allergic to.

Jan. 2010 _ FDA warns of fake versions of the over-the-counter weight loss pill Alli sold online. The pills contained a prescription-strength weight loss ingredient, rather than the normal drug found in Alli.

Dec. 2006 _ FDA says counterfeit versions of several types of diabetes test strips were distributed to pharmacies and stores nationwide. Diabetes test strips are used to measure blood sugar levels, a critical treatment factor for patients with diabetes.

Aug. 2005 _ FDA and federal prosecutors indict 11 employees of a Missouri business on charges of conspiring to sell $42 million in counterfeit versions of the cholesterol blockbuster Lipitor. The substance was manufactured in Costa Rica and illegally imported to the U.S., where it was sold to wholesalers.

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