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Supplement Maker Is Sued by State

March 11, 2003|From Reuters

California prosecutors sued the maker of a dietary supplement containing ephedra Monday, alleging the company failed to disclose the link between the stimulant and health hazards, including heart attacks, strokes and death.

The civil lawsuit, filed in Napa County Superior Court, accuses Cytodyne Technologies, Inc., and its corporate officer, Robert Chinery, of unfair business practices and making misleading statements about how effectively the dietary supplement Xenadrine burned fat, caused weight loss and increased strength.

"The suit also alleges that the defendants conspicuously failed to disclose a known association between the use of dietary supplements containing ephedra and such adverse events as death, heart attacks, stroke, cardiac arrhythmia, hypertension and seizures," the prosecutors said in a statement.

The lawsuit alleges Cytodyne's ads do not warn consumers about the link between ephedra and serious health hazards, an omission that violates the state's fair business practice laws. The lawsuit seeks to end any deceptive advertising and asks for civil penalties.

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