AG Moody Warns of New Deadly-Synthetic Opioid More Powerful Than Fentanyl


TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody is warning Floridians of a new, deadly synthetic opioid found in Florida called Isotonitazene—commonly referred to as ISO. According to reports, ISO is approximately 20 to 100 times stronger than fentanyl—an already incredibly dangerous opioid. Similar to fentanyl, this new synthetic opioid is being mixed with other drugs and appearing in the illicit drug market—possibly in powder or pill form. Often, users have no idea that a lethal synthetic opioid is mixed into a drug until it is too late. Attorney General Moody is sounding the alarm and asking people to never take an illicit drug because just one pill can kill.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “For years, we have been warning about the dangers of fentanyl and how just one pill laced with this synthetic opioid can kill. Now, there is a new, deadlier drug being found in Florida. Isotonitazene, also known as ISO, is so strong that it can kill just by coming in contact with someone’s skin or being accidentally inhaled. ISO has already been linked to overdose deaths in Florida, so please, never take any illicit drug and know that using just one time could cost you your life.”

Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco said, “ISO is a dangerous substance that we have, unfortunately, seen in Pasco County. As law enforcement continues to have to address the healthcare crisis of substance abuse, our goal remains to save lives and protect our community, which is why we have highlighted and brought awareness to the impact this dangerous substance has in our community.”

The Drug Enforcement Administration reports that, beginning in April 2019, ISO entered the illicit drug market nationally and is responsible for numerous deaths. Like fentanyl, ISO can be laced with other drugs such as cocaine, methamphetamine and even counterfeit pills. A 2021 American Society of Addiction Medicine report shows at least 40 fatal overdoses involving ISO during a six-month time period in 2020 in the counties of Cook County, Illinois and Milwaukee County, Wisconsin.

Testing by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Crime Lab revealed that ISO has been found in multiple Florida counties since 2020, and law enforcement linked this deadly-synthetic opioid to two deaths in Pasco County in 2021. PCSO released tips about how to recognize the signs of an overdose resulting from ISO, also known as Metonitazene and Etonitazene: