U.S. and German researchers have developed a pain-relieving compound, called PZM21, chemically unrelated to current opioids, that doesn't interfere with breathing — the main cause of prescription painkiller fatalities. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot)

(Bloomberg) – So far, the fight against opioid abuse has focused on treating addiction and curbing abuse. 

In February, President Barack Obama asked Congress for $1.1 billion to fund health care for addicts, and last month Congress allocated $181 million in grants for state programs.

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