University-adjacent is not university-approved in supplement ads

Obesity Research Institute, LLC v. Fiber Research International, LLC, 2018 WL 1001089, No. 15-cv-00595 (S.D. Cal. Feb. 21, 2018)Despite the high-falutin’ names, the parties compete in the market for glucomannan dietary supplements. Glucomannan is a soluble-viscous fiber derived from the Konjac plant root used in weight loss supplements. The parties agree that numerous studies have shown that at least some types of glucomannan are effective for losing weight, but dispute whether different types, grades, places of origin, processing procedures, and/or characteristics, including viscosity, of the specific glucomannan products alter its effectiveness on weight loss. ORI’s former products sourced glucomannan from another company, Shimizu. Currently, ORI sells its supplements branded as Lipozene, which is not manufactured with Shimizu’s glucomannan.  ORI (with a supplier) funded a study purporting to find significant weight reductions, of which 78% was fat,…

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