Wrongful Death Suit Filed Against USP Labs & GNC - The UltimateFatBurner Blog

Wrongful Death Suit Filed Against USP Labs & GNC

USPLabs’ legal woes continue. The company recently settled a class action lawsuit for $2 million dollars. Now, its facing another suit, over the death of Michael L. Sparling, one of the two soldiers who died in 2011 while working out after consuming DMAA-containing supplements.

According to the New York Times…

“Now the parents of Michael L. Sparling, one of the soldiers who died, have filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against USPlabs, the developer and marketer of Jack3d, and GNC, the store where he bought it. The suit, filed on Wednesday in state court in San Diego, claims that the companies deceptively marketed Jack3d as safe and effective while not warning consumers about its potential health risks. It seeks unspecified punitive damages.

In an e-mail, Laura Brophy, a spokeswoman for GNC, which is set to announce its earnings Thursday morning, said the company did not comment on pending litigation. Representatives of USPlabs and the Vitamin Shoppe did not immediately respond to e-mail or return telephone calls seeking comment.”

…The F.D.A. has received 60 reports of health problems in people who had ingested products containing DMAA, including reports of at least two deaths. Federal regulators cautioned that the reports did not prove the products themselves caused the health problems. Even so, they said they had safety concerns.

“It was a drug. That certainly calls into question whether it even fits in the supplement space,” Daniel Fabricant, the director of the F.D.A.’s division of dietary supplement programs, said in a telephone interview last week. “We continue to send warning letters.”

Author: elissa

Elissa is a former research associate with the University of California at Davis, and the author/co-author of over a dozen articles published in scientific journals. Currently a freelance writer and researcher, Elissa brings her multidisciplinary education and training to her writing on nutrition and supplements.


  1. I’m not really sure where I stand on this subject. I have a container of Jacked3d and it has a big warning label in red and yellow about dosing and regular use. I always try to investigate issues with supps before I even think of buying them. I also always follow the label directions.

    I don’t know if the person involved did the same thing or not. I do realize, and agree, that manufacturers of supps like this do have some responsibility for what is in them. I also know how people are and their dosing practice can be suspect..

    It will be interesting to see how this comes out.

    Post a Reply
    • I’m not sure there is such a thing as a 100% safe stimulant. While the focus of the lawsuits has been on DMAA, it’s worth noting that caffeine itself can be problematic. Witness the parallel concerns about adverse effects from energy drinks, for example.

      Yes, supplement manufacturers do bear some responsibility for adverse effects, even if the frequency of such events is rare, as it appears to be with Jack3d. But companies like USPLabs are caught between a rock and a hard place, methinks. There’s a market for “hardcore” supps. Unfortunately, “hardcore” and “100% safe and healthful” generally don’t go together.

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