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GNC Accused Of Pushing Creatine on Kids

MANHATTAN (CN) - General Nutrition Center targets junior high school kids in pushing dangerous creatine-containing supplements, a class action claims in Federal Court. Creatine can cause "seizures, severe dehydration, kidney failure and even death," but the drugmaker does not disclose those dangers.

The class claims GNC's actions are particularly egregious, as it "markets and sells its products to adolescents, particularly junior high and high school students ... . (A) large segment of GNC's market is comprised of these adolescents why buy GNC creatine products to help them perform better in school athletics."

The named plaintiff says he suffered a grand mal seizure and closed-head injury from it.

GNC advertises itself as the largest seller of dietary supplements in the world. "In 2007, GNC recognized more than $1 billion in revenues," the complaint states. "GNC also boasts that it is ten times larger than its nearest competitor. GNC has achieved its market share success by aggressively pushing its products on young persons, including junior high school athletes such as Plaintiff S.K., among others. GNC has received a great amount of criticism for its overly aggressive, deceptive and misleading sales practices."

The class demands punitive damages, disgorgement of unjust profits and an injunction. It is represented by Michael Reese with Reese Richman.

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