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Wrongful death lawsuit filed against workout supplement company

Michigan residents who use workout supplements may be interested in recent deaths and injuries that have been linked to a certain product. The supplement Jack3d has led to more than 80 adverse events, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration--including anxiety, depression, vomiting, chest pain, lost of consciousness and death. Two of these incidents involve U.S. soldiers who reportedly died after using the product, and the family of at least one of those soldiers has now filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the maker of Jack3d and the retailer GNC.

The issue seems to lie with the active ingredient in the supplement, 1,3 dimethylamylamine, also called DMAA. According to the FDA, DMAA is illegal in the U.S., but for an unknown reason the makers of Jack3d are using it in the product and GNC is stocking it on its shelves.

DMAA is illegal in several countries, and it is also prohibited by the International Olympic Committee, the U.S. Military, and many professional sports organizations in the U.S.

As a Harvard professor and member of the Cambridge Health Alliance who was interviewed by NBC News reporters explained, the product acts as an amphetamine in the body, similar to Ephedra, a supplement that is banned.

In one of the fatal cases that has been linked to DMAA, a 22-year-old U.S. soldier died after sustaining a cardiac arrest after running 3.5 miles. An autopsy confirmed the presence of DMAA in his system, and the Army doctors reportedly believe it played a role in the young man's death.

His parents are now suing GNC, which sells Jack3d, and USP Labs, which manufacturers it. When people are harmed by dangerous or defective products, they have a right to hold the companies that make and sell those products accountable under the law.

Source: NBC News, "Deadly workout supplement? Jack3d outside FDA's reach," Janet Klein, Lauren Specter and Adrian Taylor, April 11, 2013

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