WHO: Six new psychoactive substances under critical review by 46th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence

GENEVA, Switzerland – July 2023: The World Health Organization (WHO) evaluates the dependence-producing properties and potential harm to health of psychoactive substances. Recommendations from the WHO regarding international control under the International Drug Control Conventions are made to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and are subject to a vote by the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND).

Six new psychoactive substances (NPS) will be considered for critical review at the 46th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence of the WHO (ECDD), including two benzodiazepines, one nitazene, two synthetic cathinones and one phencyclidine-type substance. The medicines nitrous oxide and carisoprodol will be considered for pre-review.

The ECDD will be held from 16 to 20 October 2023. Analysis and data from UNODC’s Early Warning Advisory on NPS (EWA) is provided to WHO for the prioritization of NPS and their consideration for scheduling recommendations by the ECDD.

Benzodiazepines (Sedatives/hypnotics)

  1. Bromazolam
  2. Flubromazepam

 Nitazenes (Synthetic opioids)

  1. Butonitazene

 Synthetic cathinones (Stimulants)

  1. 3-CMC
  2. Dipentylone

 Phencyclidine-type substances (Dissociatives)

  1. 2-fluorodeschloroketamine

For more information, please see:

46th ECDD List of Substances Under Review

World Health Organization 46th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence