Fed Agencies Flag Ex-NFLer For Claiming CBD Cures Virus

By Sarah Jarvis
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Law360 (April 1, 2020, 8:38 PM EDT) -- A former NFL player's CBD company has received a warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission for allegedly claiming the company's products can treat or cure COVID-19.

The agencies said in their joint letter Tuesday that Neuro XPF — which was founded by former NFL offensive lineman Kyle Turley — featured misleading statements about its cannabidiol products on its website in light of the global pandemic, claiming among other things that CBD has the potential to "prepare your body to fight a coronavirus infection." The statements violate the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, according to the letter.

"Any coronavirus-related prevention or treatment claims regarding such products are not supported by competent and reliable scientific evidence," the agencies said in the letter.

The agencies requested that Neuro XPF stop selling the unapproved products for the mitigation, prevention, treatment, diagnosis or cure of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The company was required to correct the violations within 48 hours or risk legal action, including seizure and injunction, according to the letter.

The FTC declined to comment on the letter. The FDA and Neuro XPF did not immediately respond to requests for comment Wednesday.

"Crush Corona!" read one statement on the company's social media pages, according to the letter. "Your best defense against the COVID-19 blitz starts with a strong immune system. It's what protects your body from the everyday attacks of bacteria, viruses, parasites and a host of other nasties."

According to the letter, another statement on the company's website read: "While scientists around the world are working 24/7 to develop a COVID-19 vaccine, it will take many more months of testing before it's approved and available. However, there's something you can do right now to strengthen your immune system. Take CBD."

Turley has tweeted in recent weeks that CBD can "prevent and cure" the coronavirus, as well as "every other disease." Turley created Neuro XPF after receiving more than 100 concussions while in the NFL and later using medical marijuana for "pharmaceutical addiction, violent thoughts and suicidal tendencies," according to the company's website.

"FDA is advising consumers not to purchase or use certain products that have not been approved, cleared, or authorized by FDA and that are being misleadingly represented as safe and/or effective for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19," the agencies said in their letter to Neuro XPF.

The FDA and FTC sent similar warning letters to three other companies Monday, according to the FDA's website.

Fake cures for the coronavirus are among the fraudulent products and activities that U.S. attorney's offices have set their sights on combating, after a directive from the attorney general to make COVID-19-related fraud a priority.

--Additional reporting by Jody Godoy. Editing by Abbie Sarfo.

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