Live Action: The FDA and the abortion pill: A timeline of key events

By Carole Novielli

With the spotlight on the abortion pill (mifepristone) as the courts wrangle over the legitimacy of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s original approval of the drug, Live Action News has put together a timeline on the process from its beginnings to today. An estimated 5.6 million human lives have been ended through the use of this drug, which also comes with potentially serious side effects for women.


The abortion pill (mifepristone) is sold in the United States under the brand name Mifeprex and was originally invented and patented in 1980 by the French pharmaceutical company Roussel-Uclaf, a subsidiary of Germany’s Hoechst AG. It was approved for sale in the United States in September of 2000, with specific restrictions that it not be shipped directly to women but be administered by certified prescribers at a clinic or hospital where follow-up care would be available.

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