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pc-112416-ne-pink - It’s eight times stronger than morphine and has killed at least 46 people nationwide since surfacing last year as a street-popular synthetic opioid. And, now, after the overdose deaths of two in South Carolina, the state has joined several others and the federal government in making it illegal.

They call it “pink” or “pinky,” after the overgrown nail on the little finger that some drug users employ to snort powdery narcotics, but its real name is U-47700. While its recently gained popularity on the drug scene, the synthetic opioid has been around since the 1970s when researchers at the chemical company Upjohn developed it as a new pain killer.