Potassium iodide production up

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted April 18, 2005

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The federal government has awarded a contract for the production of 1.7 million pediatric doses of potassium iodide, or KI, that will be provided to states for use in communities near nuclear power plants.

The liquid formula is the first to be developed for use by children and will be available in black raspberry flavor. Because the thyroid gland rapidly absorbs any iodine in the body, people need to take KI soon after an incident that involves the nearby release of radioactive iodine, as might occur in the vicinity of a nuclear power plant.

The KI saturates the thyroid gland with harmless iodine preventing the absorption of radioactive iodine. Children are especially susceptible to the harmful effects of radioactive iodine but KI has only been available in tablets that had to be broken up to get a child's dose.

The liquid KI was purchased under the BioShield program.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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