Let me clear some things up for people considering rapamycin (generic sirolimus). I am taking it and so are my dogs!! (I have a very open-minded vet who trusts my judgement.)
Dr. Green, a very impressive individual, gave me my personal prescription for sirolimus. I have a very good PPO (Blue Cross/Blue Shield). I took it to CVS, the affiliated pharmacy, and got a great price of about $2.90/mg. (Remember, you are only going to take about 3-6 mg/week.) With a PPO you can probably do this also. CVS wants to meter it to you with a month's worth of doses at a time, but that's just how they do things. You still have access to the full quantity prescribed.
With the prescription from my vet for my dogs, I was forced to take to the open sea. Armed with only a prescription and no insurance, the picture is quite different, but you can still get a good price. Cutting to the chase, I ended up at Walmart. The prescription was for 90 mg - price $1440. But wait! after presenting a coupon downloaded from GoodRX (that's right, just anonymously downloaded and printed) - price $396!!!! As my vet remarked, that's a hell of a charge for not looking around first! ($4.40/mg is better than taking a risk buying online, in my opinion.) Costco is pretty close to that price. At CVS/RiteAid, etc., you will pay vastly more.
You can't touch the original drug rapamune (Pfizer) unless you are wealthy or go to Canada. The problem with the online pharmacies is that a lot of them are scams. Just because they have a website doesn't mean anything. At least check to see if they have a brick and mortar location. Example: At one point I was excited by the online infomercials and wanted to take NMN instead of NR; however, when I looked up the reputations of the suppliers only one was unsullied, and on further investigation their brick and mortar location turned out to be a residential dwelling!
FYI, more than one company makes sirolimus. From CVS the sirolimus was made by Greenstone, LLC, apparently a wholly owned subsidiary of Pfizer.
Hope that helps some people who are considering rapamycin but think it might be out of their reach. If you know a doctor, great, but if you don't a visit to Dr. Green is worth the trip, and I live in CA! (round trip less than $300) Do your homework first and you will learn a great deal.
MAC Here is some thoughts on the Wuhan HengHeda Pharm Co. that you ordered from:
- They use a hotmail address as their main company email address
- They do not provide a company registration number!
- They are not listed in the Dun&Bradstreet likst of Wuhan-based pharma companies: Find Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing Companies in Wuhan - Dun & Bradstreet (dnb.com)
- The factory pictures on their website (https://www.hhdpharm.com/factory/office-environment-and-factory-scale) do not show any industrial manufacturing equipment or GMP environment at all!
- They do not provide a detailed address - I could not locate the location they show on their website (looks like a google maps screenshot).
I would stay away from this company. Lots of red flags!
Thanks, everyone, for this invaluable thread.
I will soon be running an N=1 experiment on myself comparing blood levels of sirolimus after taking, in sequence, with at least a two-week wash-out period between each test, under fixed conditions (exact same meals, meal timing, etc.), the following:
- Day 1. Take Rapamune. Test blood levels X hours later.
- Day 15. Take US generic rapamycin. Test.... ""
- Day 29. Take IAS's RapaPRO. Test.... ""
Not sure yet about the X. I'm thinking 24 would be best. Measuring early, at say the expected time of peak plasma levels (2 or so hours) would be useful, but possibly inconvenient (given my schedule), and difficult to time with the needed precision. If, for one test, if it ended up being 3 hours post-dosing instead of 2, that would screw up the results more than if it ended up being 25 hours instead of 24.
The response from my rep at Zhejiang Multinpharma regarding negligible rapamycin in Chris Los's blood test: "boss, for Rapamycin we provide is for chemical research not for eating..."
Of course that is a non sequitur explanation of why 6g of 99% pure rapa powder didnt show up in peak level blood test.
I would really like to know if any of the other customers of Zhejiang Multinpharma have tested themselves or the products.
@chris_los @chuck_stanley @mac2, very sorry to hear about your experiences.
Chris & Chuck, $80 or even $190 for 10g seemed suspiciously cheap compared to what most folks have paid, but I didn’t want to give you bad luck by disparaging a source without justification.
Given the controversy around suppliers I thought I would share my experience to show not all sources from China are fraudulent.
Last summer I ordered 10g from Wuhan Henheda Pharm, based on @steve_roedde positive comments and his friend’s unintended assay by Canadian customs :) --
I wrote-up my experience ordering and receiving it here --
I never had an assay or blood work done, but my experience suggests it is absolutely legit.
I had over-exerted and hurt my knee on a hike a year before. After 11 months it still had not gotten back to normal. I also had a weird weakness in my left wrist (literally hurt to press my hand to my face while washing it at the sink) and in my right elbow (would get a sharp, shooting pain from doing pull-ups). After about 4 or 5 weeks all my joint pain was gone. For the knee especially it was unmistakable, every night for 11 months it would get stiff and have a dull ache in the morning. Also, my range of motion was reduced such that I could only bend my knee to bring my heel 4 inches from my butt. Now the pain was gone and I had full range of motion, heel to butt. It was like magic!
My wife and I began taking 10mg/week in June. By the November, I felt safe sharing it with my parents. I had told them it helped my knee, but that was all I really mentioned. I said they should take 10mg/week and see what happens.
At Christmas we were talking on the phone (we live on opposite sides of the country) and I asked how the rapamycin was working. At first they were kind of meh, not sure, but then as I probed a little more my mother mentioned the pain in her left knee had gone away. She was a school bus driver and working a clutch pedal for years and years had given her arthritis in her knee which she’d just come to live with and accept. She took glucosamine with chondrotin, but it didn’t solve the problem. It just took the edge off the worst of the symptoms. So here she was, after four or five weeks the arthritis she’d been living with for some 20 years was gone. Magic!
The acute condition with my knee, which is what prompted me to take a chance on some unknown powder from China is solved. Likewise for my mother, which I hadn’t even thought about when I sent some to them to try. Hallelujah for that! Worth every penny at twice the price, which to be honest I would have gladly paid if I knew it was guaranteed to work.
On the other hand, the lesser, chronic conditions of aging: grey hair, hair on my ears, faint age spots on the back of my wife’s hands, I can’t say that I have noticed any improvements. The stuff that is easy to definitively measure has not reversed after 9 months. I had 1 or 2 grey eye brows last year and now I’d have to say I have 3 or 4. A few long, fine hairs coming out of my tragus are still there. My wife’s hands still have faint age spots on them. I’m 49 and my wife is 48. She is pre-menopause, but the average age of menopause is 52, so it’s too early to say whether it is or will make a difference for her.
Hope folks find this useful.
Steve, I owe you a beer. And a steak dinner.
If you have access to inexpensive testing I could see using Chinese powders. But if the company is a trading company in that product, as most seem to be, then the actual manufacturer could be different with each order, depending on the best price the middle man could negotiate at the time.
In my case I feel much more confident with certain Indian manufacturers and I don’t mind paying a little higher price than worry I missed out on 2 years of the priceless benefits of rapamycin