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Protandim, the Ohio Study, American Heart Association (AHA) and National Institute of Health (NIH) Funding

Protandim distributors are intent on spreading a rumor that the American Heart Association (AHA) and the National Institute of Health (NIH) have supplied funding for research on Protandim. It turns out that neither organization approved any funds to be used to research Protandim. Today, I'd like to address about how such a rumor got started and finally put it to bed.

As best I can tell, it started on January 4th, 2011 in a press release from LifeVantage:

LifeVantage Corporation (OTC Bulletin Board: LFVN), the maker of science-based solutions to oxidative stress, announced today that a new peer-reviewed study involving its flagship product, Protandim®, sponsored by the American Heart Association and the National Institutes of Health, was published in the scientific journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine.

On the surface it sure looks like the AHA and the NIH gave money for the purpose of researching Protandim, right? That's what LifeVantage wants you to think. It turns out that this is once again an example of how they mislead distributors, customers, and investors.

That's a bold claim I know. Bold claims require lots of evidence. Here goes...

The study is question is the one titled: "Protandim attenuates intimal hyperplasia in human saphenous veins cultured ex vivo via a catalase-dependent pathway." This is commonly referred to as the Ohio State study, yet such language is a misnomer since it is just a few people associated with the university. There is never a university decree to study such things.

On Page 17 of the accepted manuscript for this research discloses the sources of funding:

Sources of Funding: This work was supported by AHA 0555538U and 0655323B to K.J.G and HL63744, HL65608 and HL38324 to J.L.Z.

When you search Google for the grant numbers, you'll see that the grants were used for other projects - completely unrelated to Protandim. However, I'll bring that research to you:

There were two grants were listed for Keith Gooch (AHA 0555538U and AHA 0655323B). Both of these grants were received by Gooch to fund research unrelated to Protandim. He merely chose of his own accord to divert those funds for the Protandim study. The evidence is in this 2010 paper, "Arterial pO2 stimulates intimal hyperplasia and serum stimulates inward eutrophic remodeling in porcine saphenous veins cultured ex vivo." Gooch listed the identical grant numbers for research that was completely unrelated to Protandim.

There were three grants were listed for Jay Zwier (HL63744, HL65608 and HL38324). All 3 of these are old grants that Zwier received to fund research unrelated to Protandim. Like Keith Gooch, he merely chose of his own accord to divert those funds for the Protandim study. The evidence can be found in this 2009 JBC paper in which Zwier listed the identical grant numbers for research that was completely unrelated to Protandim.

It is worth noting that the National Institute of Health gives us details on what the grants were intended to be used for.

What can we conclude from the above? We can conclude that AHA and the NIH are not funding studies on Protandim. They are funding studies on the things in the grant titles and descriptions - none of which include a word about Protandim. The researchers are the ones who use the grant money as they see fit.

Paul Myhill, inventor of Protandim, said:

"I believe LifeVantage’s current science program to encourage or promote issue-specific studies is a sound strategy indeed. Since Big Pharma (through its proxy, the FDA) doesn’t allow supplements to make any disease claims, I think it’s important for the scientific literature to make those claims for us."

The question the consumer should be asking here is, "How is LifeVantage 'encouraging' researchers like Jay Zwier to use their product?" It isn't like Jay Zwier is a fan of Protandim using it in any of his other research. Protandim's been around for more than 5 years, clearly Jay Zwier could have used it in all of his studies if his intent was to study Protandim. Or he could have applied for a grant to actually study Protandim.

The key point is that LifeVantage and its distributors are trying to make it seem like reputable organizations like the AHA and the NIH actually care about Protandim... and care enough to put their funding dollars into it. It seems true on the surface, but you dig underneath and find out that it is all meant to mislead distributors, customers, and investors.

The other key point is that neither the American Heart Association (AHA) nor the National Institute of Health (NIH) are directing any their funding dollars towards Protandim.

Originally posted 2011-05-29 02:03:58.

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54 Responses to “Protandim, the Ohio Study, American Heart Association (AHA) and National Institute of Health (NIH) Funding”
  1. UnbiasPoster Says:

    Sorry, Your conclusions on Protandim are wrong. The American Heart Association has posted 4 research papers on their own website about Protandim. One of them is the ‘Ohio State’ study to which you refer. Irregardless, you are in error by posting this and may result in legal action if you do not post a retraction.

    http://www.ahajournals.org/cgi/search?journalcode=all&fulltext=protandim

  2. UnbiasPoster Says:

    You wrote: “The researchers are the ones who use the grant money as they see fit.”

    Correct, therefore, it doesn’t matter if the American Heart Association or Ohio State if they collectively know what is being researched. When a researcher works at or for a University or an association, such as the American Heart Association, they give their credit to the university or association when they find something significant or insignificant. If it is insignificant, these are not published; in order to get published in the Circulation Journal, the research had to undergo tremendous scrutiny. Therefore, it is very significant that the AHA’s editors of their Circulation Journal found that the research on Protandim was a significant finding.

    1) Is there any research that has disproved Protandim’s claims?
    2) Does oxidative stress exist?
    3) From what I’ve found, Mr. Myhill is listed on the patents of Protandim. Does LifeVantage own those now? That was unclear in my research.

    You wrote: “The other key point is that neither the American Heart Association (AHA) nor the National Institute of Health (NIH) are directing any their funding dollars towards Protandim.” That point is moot as the above statement that you made was that researchers working for the AHA or Ohio State spend their money as they see fit.

    Unless the AHA or Ohio State come out disclaiming the Protandim studies, you cannot speak for them. Sorry. Just being completely analytical about your statements.

  3. Protandim Scams Says:

    UnbiasPoster,

    You will want to check that link again. All four of the search results refer to the same study that is listed in Pubmed as:

    Chronic pulmonary artery pressure elevation is insufficient to explain right heart failure.
    Bogaard HJ, Natarajan R, Henderson SC, Long CS, Kraskauskas D, Smithson L, Ockaili R, McCord JM, Voelkel NF.
    Circulation. 2009 Nov 17;120(20):1951-60. Epub 2009 Nov 2.

    I appreciate your concern for my legal well-being, but please make sure you are correct before you warn of such things.

    Finally, you may want to erase irregardless from your lexicon.

  4. Protandim Scams Says:

    If distributors are crediting the AHA and Ohio State for studying Protandim, then it certainly does matter that neither organization knows it was being studied. This is like claiming that Warren Buffett is on the board of directors of your business without his knowledge of it. It makes distributors and organizations that distribute misleading press releases untrustworthy.

    UnbiasPoster said, “Therefore, it is very significant that the AHA’s editors of their Circulation Journal found that the research on Protandim was a significant finding.”

    Actually it is worth noting that there isn’t a study on Protandim that was published in the AHA Circulation Journal. There is one titled, “Chronic Pulmonary Artery Pressure Elevation Is Insufficient to Explain Right Heart Failure” that used Protandim as an antioxidant (the same way that studies use vitamins) in order to study right heart failure. The difference is that Protandim was not being studied… failure of the right side of the heart was. The conclusion of the research did not mention Protandim.

    You may say that the above doesn’t matter. You would be mistaken. It matters significantly. It means that the editors approved the point the researchers were trying to make about the failure of the right side of the heart and found that had significant scientific merit that warranted publishing. The researchers did not conclude anything noteworthy about Protandim.

    UnbiasPoster brought up three seemingly random points,

    1) Is there any research that has disproved Protandim’s claims?
    2) Does oxidative stress exist?
    3) From what I’ve found, Mr. Myhill is listed on the patents of Protandim. Does LifeVantage own those now? That was unclear in my research.

    I’ll address them in order:

    1) The burden of proof is on Protandim. If that isn’t clear then I claim I keep a talking horse name Mr. Ed in my garage. There is no research that disproves that claim. No one is going to spend their time trying to figure out if I have a talking horse in my garage unless I sufficiently prove that I do have a talking horse. LifeVantage for the past 6 years has made a claim that they have a revolutionary product. No independent researchers, only people who are authoring with LifeVantage’s Joe McCord or have in the past, are looking into it.

    2) I don’t know if anyone argues this. However, I don’t think anyone has shown reducing oxidative stress to be beneficial to people. In fact, I think many believe it is natural and necessary. Either way, UnbiasPoster makes no point here, so I guess I won’t either.

    3) The original patent did mention that it was assigned to Lifeline Nutraceuticals Corporation – the company that became LifeVantage. My guess is that it conflicted with Philips Lifeline.

    UnbiasPoster said,

    “You wrote: “The other key point is that neither the American Heart Association (AHA) nor the National Institute of Health (NIH) are directing any their funding dollars towards Protandim.” That point is moot as the above statement that you made was that researchers working for the AHA or Ohio State spend their money as they see fit.”

    It isn’t moot. You could say it is redundant. As it was the main point of the article, it was worth explicitly reinforcing the point.

    UnbiasPoster said,

    “Unless the AHA or Ohio State come out disclaiming the Protandim studies, you cannot speak for them. Sorry. Just being completely analytical about your statements.”

    I am not speaking for the AHA or Ohio State. I’m only making the public aware that neither organization has ever spoken about Protandim themselves. That’s a key point to take away from the article.

  5. UnbiasPoster Says:

    Thank you for your discourse. However, your key point in your article is contradictory to your own statements:

    Are you saying that the American Heart Association and Ohio State University did conduct studies in their labs using Protandim or did they not?
    You have said, “I am not speaking for the AHA. . . I’m only making the public aware that neither organization has ever spoken about Protandim themselves.”

    The AHA has clearly, publicly and digitally provided evidence that they have, in fact, studied Protandim. To what degree, I neither care nor know. But they have studied it. You say they haven’t. Then why is it posted on their own website with their trademarked and copyrighted journal citations? The citation is above in my first posting.

    Did Ohio State University actually conduct the study, to any degree, involving Protandim?
    If they did not, then why is their name on the full text of the study?
    If they did, then their evidence of involvement is quite clear.

    You have said: “I don’t think anyone has shown reducing oxidative stress to be beneficial to people. In fact, I think many believe it is natural and necessary. ”
    Isn’t the very center of your argument based on disproving oxidative stress as well?
    After all, that is what this company, Lifevantage, is claiming: that their product reduces oxidative stress. Is oxidative stress real or is it a creation of this company’s?

    I appreciate your responses, however, your critique of my typographical errors is distracting.
    I will limit them henceforth.

  6. Protandim Scams Says:

    UnbiasPoster,

    First, yes I am saying that no studies that I’m aware of are listed as being conducted in the AHA labs. If you have information otherwise, feel free to present it.

    I think the difficulty here is establishing what represents “Ohio State.” There are scientists affiliated with Ohio State who did research on right heart failure using Protandim in labs at Ohio State. This does not mean that Ohio State is studying Protandim. The location of the labs are not of importance. The institution has not put forth any official stance that they are interested in Protandim. A few researchers at an institution does not represent the whole.

    “The AHA has clearly, publicly and digitally provided evidence that they have, in fact, studied Protandim. To what degree, I neither care nor know. But they have studied it. You say they haven’t. Then why is it posted on their own website with their trademarked and copyrighted journal citations? The citation is above in my first posting.”

    If you have information that the AHA has studied Protandim, again, please make that available. It certainly wasn’t the case in the Circulation Journal. As previously mentioned, the study was about right heart failure not Protandim. If you “do not care or know” the role that Protandim played in the study, you should simply give up your side of your debate. You’ve lost.

    UnbiasPoster said,

    “Did Ohio State University actually conduct the study, to any degree, involving Protandim?
    If they did not, then why is their name on the full text of the study?
    If they did, then their evidence of involvement is quite clear.

    No a few researchers at Ohio State University conducted a study, not the University itself. Universities do not conduct studies. People affiliated with them do. Unless you can show some kind of announcement from a University President or at least a department head stating their focus on Protandim, we can not apply the choices of these individuals to be representative of the institution.

    Rhode Island Red a scientist commenting in the Wikipedia Discussion of Protandim also brings up a great point about the Ohio State University:

    “The institutional affiliations are largely immaterial. Most of the studies involved multiple institutions and it would not benefit the article if a long list of institutional names were included, since they would overshadow the key content. The full citations are listed so anyone interested in knowing all the affiliations of all the authors can get the information merely by clicking the links. The study that you refer to as the ‘Ohio State Study’ has been cited in the article all along (reference #15 — Joddar et al.). This is a good example — it would be arbitrary and misleading to list only one participating institution (eg, Ohio State) since multiple institutions were involved in the research (ie, Ohio State University, RIKEN Nanomedical Engineering, and Joe McCord of LifeVantage).”

    UnbiasPoster said,

    “You have said: ‘I don’t think anyone has shown reducing oxidative stress to be beneficial to people. In fact, I think many believe it is natural and necessary.’
    Isn’t the very center of your argument based on disproving oxidative stress as well?
    After all, that is what this company, Lifevantage, is claiming: that their product reduces oxidative stress. Is oxidative stress real or is it a creation of this company’s?”

    I don’t believe I’ve made any kind of argument about oxidative stress at all in any post on this site.

    I don’t believe your logic is sound. Let’s take an example of a common laundry stain remover. Let’s say that Tide makes a claim that it removes stains. (They might even make these claims.) Do I have to show that stains do not exist to disprove Tide’s claims? Let’s take it a step further. Pretend I bottle a combination of mud and ketchup, called Mudup, and claim that it removes stains from clothing. How does proving the existence of clothing stains either prove or disprove my claim about Mudup? I suppose if I proved that clothing stains didn’t exist then Mudup and Tide could both be considered to making fraudulent claims.

    I have not claimed that oxidative stress nor clothing stains don’t exist. If we presume they do, then there is a still a lot of work to do to verify the claims. The whole topic of oxidative stress is far beyond the scope of the AHA and NIH funding of the study and should be tabled to another article for another day.

    I have not critiqued any typographical errors. The use of the word “irregardless” can not be considered a problem with typing. That said, I will make many, many mistakes in the grammar of these articles and comments. I type quickly and I don’t have the time or patience to proofread. I also go back and edit parts of sentences with may impact other parts making the whole thing not grammatical. I only pointed out “irregardless” because I was grateful to the person who pointed it out to me years ago.

  7. Joe Says:

    I’m not going to bicker and argue over the issues noted above. It appears that AHA and NIH provided grant funding for studies related to oxidative stress and the heart, and the researchers chose (for whatever reason) to use that money to study Protandim.

    The question I have for you – What about the results? Even if you disagree with the characterization of the funding or affiliations, what do the results tell you?

    If it’s true that Protandim “inhibits the formation of intimal hyperplasia (IH) and the increase in cellular proliferation in human saphenous veins (HSV)” (page 10) and “attenuates rise in superoxide levels in HSV,” (page 10) wouldn’t that be a good thing?

    If it’s true that “The ability of Protandim to completely block IH and reduce cellular proliferation in HSV harvested from individuals undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting makes it an attractive candidate for future consideration as a pharmacological treatment of vein-graft failure,” (page 13) wouldn’t that be a good thing? Expecially for people undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting?

  8. Protandim Scams Says:

    Joe, it is the “(for whatever reason)” part that is a central point of this article. Clearly the researchers aren’t big Protandim fans or they’d have used it in their other research.

    As for the results, it appears this a test tube study. Plus I believe other antioxidants do similar things, so it would be important to specifically quantify the results of using Protandim vs. a multivitamin (for example).

  9. Joe Says:

    I get that you disagree with how the funding and support is characterized by the company. I have read many of your posts and think you have made a lot of good points regarding the company. But I am a customer, and I am interested in Protandim’s performance. My quest for information goes to the point of…is Protandim a scam if the actual research and results are valid?

    Ex vivo = “Test tube” study? Mabye. But, isn’t that a valid methodology for initial studies of anything…from pharmaceuticals, to vitamins, to Protandim? Following positive results, on human tissues by the way, the next step would be a longer-term study in vivo.

    Protandim vs. multivitamin = could be a valid comparison with interesting results. I haven’t seen any studies on multivitamins. But, what if the multivitamin performs just as well as Protandim? Does that make the Protandim results any less valid? No, it just gives you more buying options.

  10. Vogel Says:

    Anyone who uses the non-word “irregardless” cannot be taken seriously.

  11. Vogel Says:

    Joe said: “If it’s true that Protandim ‘inhibits the formation of intimal hyperplasia (IH) and the increase in cellular proliferation in human saphenous veins (HSV)’ (page 10) and ‘attenuates rise in superoxide levels in HSV,’ (page 10) wouldn’t that be a good thing?”

    Maybe and maybe not; that’s what clinical trials are for, and none have been performed to determine whether this effect is clinically relevant or beneficial. This study has no direct bearing on what consumers can or should expect from using Protandim. But it appears that LFVN wants people to think otherwise.

  12. Protandim Scams Says:

    You make a great point Joe. As a customer you should care about Protandim’s performance. The question becomes, “How is that performance measured?” It can’t be measured subjectively by an individual person because of the placebo effect. LifeVantage’s FAQ suggests TBARS as being a sound form of measurement, but multivitamins and other antioxidants affect TBARS results. LifeVantage’s FAQ also mentions that there’s no known place where you can a TBARS test done, effectively negating any way I can see for a customer to measure Protandim’s performance. This is why I have suggested that they company do large-scale clinical tries and submit the results to the FDA for approval for whatever claims they want to make.

    Yes test tube studies are useful for initial phases. The product has been around 6 years and already had a human study – just with very, very few people. Clearly, the product isn’t in the initial phase yet. If you want to say they are, then I would suggest that they pull the product and come back when after those clinical trials that I mentioned above.

    You said that you haven’t seen research on multivitamins. I realize that this is just vitamin E, but here you go: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11341050. There’s lots of such research out there.

    As far as having more buying options, that makes sense, but Protandim isn’t a good buying option unless it proves to be better than a multivitamin. It’s not priced competitively at all. Additionally, one can go on Amazon and purchase all the ingredients separately at a greatly reduced cost. The wise consumer takes this buying option if they are interested in Protandim.

    Joe, you seem to make some assumptions that the reseach and results are valid. I’m not even sure what “valid” means in this context. For example, they do some tests by injecting the equivalent of a whole bottle of Protandim into a rat. How is this research and any results valid to Protandim’s intended audience. What does it tell us? Turns out, it doesn’t tell us anything.

    In addition we have the companies misleading tactics such as in this article. We also have the company supporting a distribution model that facilitates illegal medical claims, which clearly does extensive harm to the public.

  13. Frances Says:

    I have been trying to find information on protandim from an objective source for quite some time now. If you look at the studies sited (all that I have seen) Joe Mccord’s name is on all of them. As the Director of the Science for the company that manufactures Protandim, he should not be a part of any Ohio state University or AHA Protandim study.

  14. Protandim Scams Says:

    Good point, Frances

  15. HunBaron Says:

    Suppose I want to sell ice to Eskimos, so I can make a bunch of money. Since there is no shortage of ice in their life, I need a gimmick to make them more desirable. Viola! I claim my ice is WARMER than regular ice, so an igloo built with them will keep you nice and cozy. I call my revolutionary breakthrough, HeatBlocks – and get a patent.
    I publish some “studies” and “research” papers under my name that document the increased temperatures in my igloos, add charts and photos of cozy Eskimos families. I then organize an MLM convention to launch the marketing. This should be a slam dunk sell. Why, at the convention, my marketing directors are already calling it a scientific breakthrough, some even refer to them as miracle “heat generators”.
    I mean, who wouldn’t want to build their igloo using such miracle HeatBlocks? Besides, anyone who bought some will vouch for them, making it an easy sell to friends and family who, in turn…
    …and all would be warm and cozy – and instant entrepreneurs. After all, who would ever complain their igloo is not nice and cozy?
    After all, it has been scientifically proven…

  16. Protandim Scams Says:

    Good analogy HunBaron. This shows the kind of game that Protandim and some other MLMs are playing.

  17. WB Says:

    Frances, I’ve looked into all this too attempting to make an informed decision. Dr. McCord’s name on the studies bothered me too until I researched the meaning of peer reviewed. According to Wikipedia, “Peer review is a process of self-regulation by a profession or a process of evaluation involving qualified individuals within the relevant field. Peer review methods are employed to maintain standards, improve performance and provide credibility. In academia peer review is often used to determine an academic paper’s suitability for publication.” If you approach it from the creative performace aspect, one definition says “Peer review is the evaluation of creative work or performance by other people in the same field in order to maintain or enhance the quality of the work or performance in that field.” From that perspective, it makes sense to me. Just as the producer of a play might reach out to other producers/directors for their opinion on how to improve a performance.

  18. Protandim Scams Says:

    WB,

    It doesn’t make sense to view McCord’s work as a creative performance. It is a scientific paper. It is to be judged objectively not subjectively like a creative performance.

    The important thing that Frances seems to have pointed out, and it has been noted elsewhere on this site, is that McCord is behind every paper – scientists are not researching this on their own because they are interested in it. It is McCord drumming up business. Now you may say that there is one paper without McCord’s name on it. Those researchers have previously published an extremely similar article with McCord, so it still has his influence all over it.

    WB, thanks for mentioning Wikipedia’s article on Peer Review. I got this from Wikipedia’s article on Peer Review Failure:

    “Peer review, in scientific journals, assumes that the article reviewed has been honestly written, and the process is not designed to detect fraud. The reviewers usually do not have full access to the data from which the paper has been written and some elements have to be taken on trust. It is not usually practical for the reviewer to reproduce the author’s work, unless the paper deals with purely theoretical problems which the reviewer can follow in a step-by-step manner.”

    Thus in the case of discussing whether Protandim is scamming people we can’t trust the process of peer review.

  19. WB Says:

    Can you trust the American Heart Association? I have downloaded the articles from the http://www.ahajournals.org/ website to have taken to a cardiologist. Ultimately, what matters most is whether or not a product does what is hoped. If the cardiologist feels, after reviewing the AHA articles, that the product would not be harmful and may be beneficial, that’s the only opinion that matters. I would hope everyone would consult their physician and let their opinion be the final word.

  20. Protandim Scams Says:

    WB, you didn’t seem to address any of the previous points I made including that peer review isn’t important when relating to Protandim and that while Protandim has been around 5-6 years, no doctors outside of Protandim’s own seem to be interested.

    The article on the American Heart Association website was not a study focused on Protandim, it was “Chronic Pulmonary Artery Pressure Elevation Is Insufficient to Explain Right Heart Failure.” The reason it was published was because it was the study had value in explaining a specific condition on right heart failure. When you read the article’s conclusion there was no mention of Protandim.

    And when you say you downloaded “articles” (plural) from http://www.ahajournals.org/ can you please reference them (plural). I’m only familiar with one study.

    You really shouldn’t be asking people to consult their physician or cardiologist about Protandim. These doctors have enough on their plate without having their patients pretending to be medical experts and giving them homework. You could keep your cardiologist busy for days printing out studies on all sorts of articles available on Pubmed (olive oil, garlic, fish oil are just a few). And people wonder why health costs are so high in the United States….

    In the end, you really don’t have to go further than LifeVantage’s own assessment of Protandim: “Protandim is a dietary supplement, not a drug. We do not promote or intend to imply or represent that Protandim can prevent, cure, treat or mitigate any disease or class of disease.” This includes heart disease or any condition that you would see a physician or cardiologist for.

  21. WB Says:

    You’re discouraging patients from consulting their physician? Really?

    The name of the AHA articles/abstracts where Protandim is mentioned are:

    Chronic Pulmonary Artery Pressure Elevation Is Insufficient to Explain Right Heart Failure

    Abstract 6162: It is not (just) the Increased Afterload that Causes the Right Heart to Fail in Pulmonary Hypertension

    Abstract 6166: Molecular Mechanisms of Right Ventricular Failure: A Role for Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor and Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress

  22. Vogel Says:

    The meeting abstracts to which you were referring (which are not peer-reviewed, as would be the norm with full rseaerch articles) were published in 2008 and were authored by the same group (Bogaard, McCord, et al.) that ultimately published a complete study (only tangentially related to Protandim) in the journal Circulation in 2009. As Protandim Scams pointed out, Protandim was a very small component of the final version of the Circulation study, mentioned almost anecdotally, and was also a minor component of the abstracts you cited.In other words, you’ve shown us nothing new; you just took a half-assed step backwards.
    http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/meeting_abstract/118/18_MeetingAbstracts/S_1073-b
    http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/meeting_abstract/118/18_MeetingAbstracts/S_1072-b

  23. Protandim Scams Says:

    Vogel, thanks for pointing out that the articles are all the same study and that again the AHA published it for findings that weren’t related to Protandim.

    WB, yes, I really am discouraging patients from printing up studies from Pubmed and taking them to their physician. How practical is it for someone to bring in a stack of 5000 pages across dozens of products for their physician to research? If you do it for Protandim, you have to do it for the other things that show actual promise in studies conducted by actual independent, unbiased researchers (as opposed to Protandim).

    I don’t call my investment advisor every time I get an email from a Nigerian prince who wants me to send him money, either. Since LifeVantage itself says it can’t help with any heart condition, listen to them. Let doctors do their jobs helping patients rather than giving them more work to do.

  24. Patsy Says:

    Is it just my imagination that after taking Protandim for only two weeks, a chronic asthmatic cough I had disappeared. It was the type of cough that constantly felt like I had a piece of popcorn stuck in my throat. Is it just my imagination that my vertigo, which was severe, is completely gone! Is it just my imagination that my energy level has been raised.

    Yes, I am now a distributor. But I didn’t become a distributor until after I was able to see the results for myself. So for me, poo-poo on the studies. Heck $47 a month was worth it to eliminate that disgusting cough. And my husband use to give me alka seltzer in the middle of the night practically every night. Now, no more alka seltzer for me. I guess alka-seltzer wouldn’t like this story. Enough people like me could put them out of business.

    LOL, and it’s nice getting out of bed without that craze “drunk” feeling from vertigo!!!

    I’m a user, and a distributor, and I’m very happy. If its all a placebo, I promise not to tell my body any differently. And the stories I hear from my customers and other distributors would be enough to make you head spin!!!

    So you keep worry about who funded what, while we all feel better! Love, Peace & Happiness, and much bliss to you.

  25. Protandim Scams Says:

    Nope, it is not your imagination. Is it the imagination of young boy who scraped his knee that his mother’s kiss will make it better?

    No, it is called the placebo effect and it has been documented for hundreds of years. Give it a look on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Placebo or just search Google on “placebo” and read any trusted source you choose.

    Of course you aren’t going to tell your body anything differently, you are making money from it.

    Trust me, I’ve heard all the same stories from distributors and their customers about MonaVie, Xango, Mangosteen, and just about every other MLM-based health product. Your head would spin if you actually read those and realized that virtually any supplement becomes a miracle cure with tons of testimonials when it sold via MLM. It’s an amazing coincidence.

    This article shows in greater detail why your testimonial is pointless.

  26. Eddie Says:

    I had a person go as far to tell me Dr. Oz was pushing this stuff, but when you go to his site, as with the AHA he just mentions the name Protandim and the freaks run wild in the streets “Dr. Oz is promoting us and our benefits!” PLEASE.

  27. Don Simmons Says:

    Why are people so vehemently trying to disprove Protandim? Could they have a vested interest like many from the big pharma or the AMA. Of course, if you had millions and billions and trillions of dollars invested in careers,products and facilities all over the world, you be doing the same thing. It’s like the Bid Oil and OPEC. They want you to continue using their products so they can stay filthy rich while the public really doesn’t get well. All I know is that I’m benefiting from the use of Protandim and this threatens the Medical establishment and its suppliers. It’s all about the almighty dollar, keeping it in their pockets and not in anyone else’s.

  28. protandimscams Says:

    Nope, sorry, there’s no profit motive from this end. We just want to give any prospective buyer the truthful information about the product, and expose the lies that LifeVantage tells so that they can line their pockets with consumer’s hard-earned dollars.

    It’s a very simple situation really. LifeVantage can do the clinical trials to show the FDA, or its equivalent in any country in the world and prove the product helps with any medical condition. They choose not to because they know the product doesn’t work and they are relying on the placebo effect.

  29. Hunbaron Says:

    Don, I am glad you are “benefiting” (whatever that means). Now you can be an enthusiastic spokesperson for whatever product or action you decide should be credited for those “benefits”. Because you take Protandim, you decided to attribute those benefits to Protrandim. You are convinced your testimony and conclusions are irrefutable (after all, you ARE “benefiting”). Therefore, there must be sinister reasons for anyone to conclude otherwise, (i.e, Protandim has not been shown to cure or treat any ailment and has no measurable effect on aging). BTW, if you are not already, you should consider becoming a distributor for Protandim (great money…) and protect us against Big Oil, OPEC, Big Pharma and the AMA.
    Yes, I agree with you.
    All who bought Heat Blocks from me similarly benefited. They are toasty warm in their igloos and feel as you do: Big Oil is behind the attempt to discredit my Heat Blocks as the true source heat. Its all about selling oil and the almighty dollar. Which is also why I keep selling my Heat Blocks, using my clients’ testimonials, laughing all the way to the bank. Wanna become a distributor? What are Heat Blocks? See my Post #15.

  30. Don Simmons Says:

    Who cares about Dr. Joe McCord’s Financial interests. Is any asking about the Big Pharma’s interest in continuing to pump drugs into the American public. Benefiting for me is from bursitis and arthritis without having any harmful side effects not to mention not being tired or a better overall sense of well being.The AMA Big Pharma and who ever else you are working for is sure going through a lot to convince people not to take Protandim. That in itself gives me pause and makes you and your blog suspect. I’ve never seen this happen to any other product. Someone is sure afraid of this product being successful. How much are you being paid to maintain this site? As long as I can clearly see benefits healthwise and otherwise I’ll trust Lifevantage, Dr. McCord and Protandim. I don’t need your crackpot logic or your misguided advice.

  31. protandimscams Says:

    Big Pharma proves their products work better than a placebo through multiple clinical trials. This scientific method of placebo controlled studies is well proven. If you feel that you have a better product you can do the same as any pharmaceutical company. If you think you lack money to do the trials but have a product that works, you can raise money from investors.

    I don’t work for any pharmaceutical companies. I only want to scientific testing that has been proven the world over to be done for Protandim. LifeVantage refuses to do it.

    Also, why should you trust LifeVantage. They lied to you about McCord inventing Protandim. McCord admitted it himself in this letter: http://static.protandimscams.com/images/mccord-didnt-invent-protandim.jpg

  32. Emily Rose Says:

    Patsy: For $47 per month you could join a gym, get the blood and lymphatic system flowing, get a massage, start meditating, and rid yourself of your many ailments.
    Don: For “a better overall sense of well being” you can eat Organic food, drop the dairy and meat, and maybe also get a few massages per month and meditate.
    Although our economy thrives on the idea of a quick fix, true healing takes time. It is a process, not a pill.
    I’ve been reading this (and pro-protandim perspectives, as well) for too many hours now, and what I’m taking away from it all is to continue my healthy lifestyle and age gracefully, as a human body is meant to do.
    My opinion: LifeVantage is an MLM. They are deceptive about the foundation of their product and its development. They’re making unsubstantiated claims without wanting to go the distance and back up those claims with an abundance of research. (That alone seems strange, because I know if I made some miracle product, I’d want to have it validated a million times over to avoid coming up on a google search with “scam” behind my name). It seems to me that they’re likely much like every other BUSINESS and money is their main prerogative.
    I don’t doubt that healing herbs and traditions have served many cultures for many years and have health benefits. I personally subscribe to many healing modalities, mostly in alignment with Eastern Medicine and Philosophy.
    I’ve also learned that the mind is a very powerful healing tool. Telling yourself how great you feel each day, whether it’s because of a pill or because you know that simply saying those words out loud allows you to believe it more easily, is an amazing practice.
    But when it comes to Protandim, I challenge you to consider this: if there are only five main ingredients, and they are from natural sources, why not just purchase the ingredients individually and create your own concoction? Likely less expensive. Definitely more sound. Then you get to know EXACTLY what you’re putting in your body.
    Or better yet, look into Ayurveda and research the many benefits of a healthful lifestyle, including the use of herbs. Then you can concoct a formula for yourself and your own needs, with all natural herbs from different parts of the world—one incredible thing about living in this day and age. We can reach everywhere without having to leave our couches.

    Eat raw food.
    Get your heart rate up.
    Laugh at the world!

    Peace to all.

  33. Reed Says:

    “How practical is it for someone to bring in a stack of 5000 pages across dozens of products for their physician to research? If you do it for Protandim, you have to do it for the other things that show actual promise in studies conducted by actual independent, unbiased researchers (as opposed to Protandim).”

    huh… I wasn’t aware those kinds of studies existed in the health world, let alone the ethical world of pharmacology.

    Interesting comments from everyone by the way. You can definitely see where the lines have been drawn. Both sides have valid points, but now I am left wishing there was more research on this product for me to weigh-in on myself.

    But thanks anyway for proving yet again there is indeed 2 distinctive viewpoints when it comes to health :)

  34. MrPete Says:

    I’ve dealt with these kinds of things before.
    Some are claiming protandim was “studied” in these journal articles.

    At least for the one most cited, it is NOT protandim that was studied. The heart was studied, and protandim happened to be a medication used to cause a particular effect. AFAIK any of several substances could have been used for the same effect.

    Some might not appreciate the difference. Let me put it this way: if protandim was being studied, they would have tested varying levels of protandim, and measured the varying effect. And they would have included a placebo control, and would have done a double blind study.

    But none of that was done because they were not attempting to measure or investigate the efficacy of protandim.

    To me, a number of these studies sound like “product placement” efforts in TV and movies — getting your brand into the limelight.

    To be sure, a number of smaller animal studies recently done by McCord probably ARE legitimate. But an animal study is NOT the same as a human study.

    Go look at scholar.google.com and compare citations of the various protandim studies. In the highly cited studies, it is just a “product placement”. In the uncited, little cited, only-by-friends-cited studies, they are animal studies.

    Bottom line: this is hardly a proven substance for human benefit. And I feel like McCord and this company are “gaming” the publication system.

    (BTW journal publication does NOT mean the study was carefully reviewed. It’s more like: any glaring errors would hopefully be found, eventually. Lots of crud gets through all the time. Just like spam.)

  35. protandimscams Says:

    Reed,

    As Mr. Pete explained the studies are essentially the crud of the medical community. I think that’s a good explanation. I supposed one could say that there’s two views on emails, one from the spammers and one from people who dislike spam. There’s two distinct viewpoints there, but society has largely sided with the ones that are against spam. Same is true here.

  36. Vogel Says:

    Good point Pete. You’re right that the data from some of the smaller animal studies might have some degree of validity, but the validity ends where the authors speculate about the relevance of the results (this is where the product promotional angle comes in — the significance of the results is overstated) and when distributors are encouraged to leverage such mechanistic basic science studies in mice/test tubes to convince people that the data somehow proves that the product has major health benefits. The latter angle is in fact why these studies are generated in the first place — smoke and mirrors.

  37. Chrispy Says:

    Protandim Scams says:
    “They know the product doesn’t work and they are relying on the placebo effect.”

    RIGHT! Check out all of the videos for dogs and horses given Protandim….They’re arely moving – then a few weeks later after Protandim, running and jumping. Yep- that’s a placebo effect.

    Don’t knock it till you try it.

  38. protandimscams Says:

    Please do the research on the placebo effect in animals. It’s been studied.

  39. Reed Says:

    Btw, I agree that medical studies tend to be molded to produce a result… albiet one that supports the drugs financial future. This drug has striked out in many areas as far as studies, proof and greed, but I am past that right now, since you can say that about every drug on the market ahah. What I am more concerned about is learning about the ingredients, and the possible cumulative effects, if any.

  40. protandimscams Says:

    Protandim is not a drug, it is is a dietary supplement. You can buy green tea extract at any GNC, CVS, Walgreens, etc. It isn’t used to treat any medical condition just like Protandim.

    The drugs on the market have undergone multiple placebo-controlled clinical trials providing substantial evidence to the FDA of the benefits.

    I moved your comment about the ingredients to the LifeVantage Protandim Open Discussion, as it isn’t a fit for this post.

  41. Intrestedparty Says:

    I am not a user of Protandim, nor am I a scholar or any kind of guru. I agree more studies would be a good thing, but all of this arguing makes me think of how people rejected Columbus and those scientists of his time who believed the earth was round. Maybe this McCord guy is really onto something, I mean he has been honored and acknowledged by his peers for his scientific work. We certainly are FAR from having a complete understanding of the human body so if people use it and feel better, more power to them, and maybe the rest of us will find out in twenty years with new scientific breakthroughs, that they were right. . .

  42. protandimscams Says:

    Intrestedparty, in the times of Columbus it was believed that there were monsters at the end of the world. Columbus showed people that it simply wasn’t true. LifeVantage and McCord could do clinical studies to show that Protandim works just like Columbus showed people the truth. LifeVantage and McCord have done exactly 1 clinical in 5+ years and it had negative results… those taking Protandim actually did worse than the people who took a placebo.

    We have a complete understanding on how to do clinical studies and show whether a product works or not. We have a complete understanding about how the placebo effect can create a false perception of a product working when it doesn’t. There’s no need to wait and find out in 20 years. They had a chance over the last 5 and they haven’t attempted to do any significant studies. They have shown no intention of ever doing so.

    As for McCord, his peers aren’t studying Protandim. No one is except for him. You never seen any studies done except for those with McCord… and again never any clinical studies that are relevant, just test tube studies so that distributors can mislead others into thinking that it works.

  43. P Sardagna Says:

    Interestedparty; as you claim, you are not a scholar or guru, but I am sure you are intelligent. If you really are interested, a little IQ and minimal effort to learn the documented facts made available through this discussion group is really all you need to learn that, in spite of how it appears to you and many, many other non-gurus, the Earth is indeed, not as flat as it looks to some…

  44. rick seneris Says:

    After reading all the comments from both sides, my conclusion is protandimscam has a vested interest with the failure of Protandim. I have justed started using Protandim for 9 days and my neck and shoulder pains are gone. I also regain my balance. I could walk straight and at a faster pace like when I was in my forties. There is general feeling of well being and good mood. I’m less irretable. I just feel good (well). I really don’t care how Protandim is being marketed, I just want to use it beacuse it works for me.

  45. protandimscams Says:

    It’s a vested interest to point out that they are clearly scamming people… this can not be debated.

    As for whether Protandim works… No, Your MLM Health Product Doesn’t “Work.”

  46. Alan Says:

    I was pitched Protandim yesterday and was told of numerous studies, claims, breakthroughs, stories of those with ailments of Lupus, Diabetes, MS, Cardio, Back ailments, Neuropathy, etc. that have seen marvelous results (with the statement “your results may be different”), clinical studies and endorsements’ by such famed identities as; AHA, Mayo Clinic, LSU and OSU.

    Based on what was presented as a truism, knowing that the truth would be stretched/exaggerated somewhat, I went ahead with trying the Protandim.

    After the MLM Lifevantage distributor left I went on the internet to start my own due diligence. I consider myself to be a trusting individual until you prove me otherwise with a degree of common sense.

    I had exhausted 6 hours researching and reading what I could find that was not biased. I am extremely disappointed with my findings and lack of creditable information to be found. Regarding the AHA and Mayo Clinic studies and/or endorsements . . . ZIP, NADA, ZERO.

    You will probably read this after you had made an investment as I did; for that I am sorry you were duped as I was. BTW, I called the distributor to cancel my order and they will give me a RMA number once I receive it. The cost to will be return shipping and a $10.00 restocking charge.

  47. protandimscams Says:

    It’s too bad that you couldn’t do the research first, but at least you did the research. It’s one thing to stretch and exaggerate the truth, but bringing up all the things you listed and pitching it as an aid for all of them goes beyond exaggeration.

    As this article pointed out, Protandim distributors are using the AHA’s name to push their product without the AHA’s endorsement. It’s simply their attempt to trick you.

  48. » LifeVantage Shows the Research isn’t Independent Says:

    […] already know that researchers aren't getting funding to study Protandim, so this shouldn't come as a big surprise. It's just another piece of the […]

  49. Neutral Says:

    Whats sad is the attacking back and forth. I read a comment of someone who said he/she felt better while taking it. Someone followed up just to say your MLM Health Product doesn’t work. The fact that it makes a person feel better can’t be disputed, whether it be because of his brain manifesting temporary relief based on the faith in the product or the actual product working for the person. People are knuckle heads, grow up people. Try working together, a skeptic isn’t going to be able to sway a believer and vice versa.

  50. protandimscams Says:

    What’s sad is that people are supporting the suppression of information. If you read the article about the MLM health product not working, you’d learn that even if a person feels better through some placebo effect it can be a dangerous thing.

    The key thing is to get the information and be informed. After that, spending money is your own personal decision. Also never spread the word of anything that isn’t proven to work for that condition… and Protandim isn’t proven to work for any condition.

    Finally, a distributor sharing a testimonial of Protandim is breaking the FTC endorsement guidelines.

    So if you are a believer, great… spend your money. Just don’t go breaking laws peddling snake oil and other supplements unless you have the FDA approval to back it up.

  51. Neutral Says:

    Wow, that’s your response! Not even related to the product. Good comeback!!!! Have a good day.

  52. protandimscams Says:

    Your comment wasn’t related to the product. I don’t why you expected the response to be.

    If you read the article No Your MLM Product Doesn’t Work as you referenced earlier, you’d realize that any MLM pill or juice has the same “brain manifesting temporarily relief based on the faith in the product” (your own words). Why have a discussion about the product until we can definitively prove that this isn’t the case? We’d could spend the next thousand of years discussing different permutations of these products. I don’t have that kind of time, and I sure hope you don’t either.

    Remember, the onus is on the company to prove that the product works for any medical condition. For example, Pfizer has done that with Viagra for ED, we can point to the presented proof and have an intelligent discussion about the product working. With LifeVantage failing to provide such proof, it doesn’t make much sense to pontificate about it actually working. Don’t take my word for it though, The Medicine Guy puts forth many of these arguments quite well.

    Have a blessed day yourself.

  53. DogmomNY Says:

    Interesting comments about there not being independent research about Protandim. but…wait…here’s one from The Netherlands that was paid for by research grants from BiogenIdec (the creator of the pharmaceutical firm that came up with BG-12, the drug compared to Protandim. (my guess is that Biogenidec will not be hiring him again. http://bit.ly/1eHzLbT Protandim came out the winner when the two were compared. Hmmm….$50,000 per year pharmaceutical beat out by a $50 per month supplement? Sweet! and, I have to wonder how you would explain the incredible results seen by the animals who are using Protandim…a dog who could hardly walk, then playing like a puppy 10 days after protandim? Placebo effect? in an animal? doubtful. (I actually was curious enough to call the owners and 2.5 years later, dog still going strong. ) I have dogs so this was important to me. Then there was a 23 year old horse who could barely walk yet 3 days later after Protandim, was LOPING. Yes, she is still going strong a year and a half later. I find it difficult to believe this is a scam but I know you are set in your idea. Not going to change that! Not trying. I know you love poking fun at MLM.

  54. protandimscams Says:

    Sadly, you seem to have been taken in by the marketing.

    As best I can tell the study was never published in any form for anyone to read. Only the abstract exists as far as I’ve seen. No one has been able to come up with the full text to be analyzed. That also means that it wasn’t deemed worthy enough for publication in any peer reviewed journal.

    So no, there’s no reliable evidence from that link that Protandim beat anything. In addition as we know from this NY Times article many studies tend to contradict each other. So this one unpublished study would be less than a drop in the bucket in the world of non-clinical trial studies… the lowest form of studies available.

    No placebo in dogs? Are you sure about that? Did you read this study? I guess you didn’t. Funny how Protandim sellers can search Pubmed when it comes to Protandim, but they lose all ability when it comes to information that doesn’t go their way.

    I find it pretty deplorable that LifeVantage people are still using this video of one dog. It’s like a video of the Lock Ness Monster. It’s clearly not backed by any scientific review and it doesn’t seem to have been duplicated in any other environment, scientific or not. It only seems to apply to one dog, Cassie, of all the dogs that’s ever tried it. It doesn’t point to an effective product, it points to some other factor that was not properly isolated in testing.

    I know you are set in your idea and actual scientific information isn’t going to change it. I’m not trying to, just hoping that the next person coming along reading this sees that such comments are scientific unfounded.

 

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