September 24, 2014 — Law360.com reports that USPLabs and GNC have agreed to pay $2 million to settle a class action lawsuit in Florida involving OxyElite Pro and Jack3D, workout supplements that were recalled.
The consumer class action (PDF) was filed last year in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida. The four plaintiffs are seeking reimbursement for everyone who purchased OxyElite Pro.
The class action against USPLabs and GNC alleges:
“Defendants’ false and misleading advertising of weight-loss supplements containing a long-forgotten, ineffective, extremely dangerous and potentially lethal ingredient that was patented in 1944 as a nasal decongestant.”
The ingredient in question, 1,3-dimethylamylamine (DMAA), was introduced to the bodybuilding community in 2005 by Patrick Arnold, a chemist convicted for his role in the BALCO baseball steroid scandal. DMAA was marketed as an alternative to ephedrine, another stimulant that had been banned a few years earlier.
On the label, USPLabs claimed that Jack3D and OxyElite Pro were “University Studied,” thoroughly tested for safety and efficacy, and no worse than caffeine. In truth, studies demonstrate that consuming these products at recommended levels can increase blood pressure and heart rate.
The FDA cracked down on DMAA in supplements in 2012. After fighting the FDA for a year, USPLabs agreed to re-formulate OxyElite Pro without DMAA. Unfortunately, they chose to re-formulate it with another unapproved ingredient, aegeline, which was linked to an outbreak of liver damage last year. About 50 people who were injured have filed lawsuits.
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