A Methamphetamine Analog in Craze?


5380714-Popular-Bodybuilding-Supplement-Contains-Meth-Like-Compound-300x168Craze is a pre-workout supplement made by the supplement company Driven Sports.  It has recently been pulled off of retail shelves as cautionary reports from labs started accruing.  The reports are accusing Craze of containing an amphetamine analogue that is used as a recreational drug and has never before been used on humans.  Researched provided by Harvard Medical School, the US FDA, the South Korean National Forensic Service, and the RIVM in the Netherlands were all involved in the Craze takedown.


What initially led to these studies were reports from the WADA.  The WADA reported that doping hunters discovered methamphetamine analogues in tested athletes that had never been seen on previous doping tests.  Every one of the athletes who were caught came clean about their Craze use.  After all, it was legal and presumed harmless.  The researchers then went off to buy a few tubs of Craze and proceeded to analyze the contents in their labs.


Craze disclosed some common analogues of beta-phenylethylamine, which is a mild stimulant found in many common foods including chocolate.  There was a very peculiar substance that raised suspicions, however; N,N-diethyl-phenylethylamine.  Underground supplements companies are not regulated by the FDA and are very good at adding amphetamines or other stimulants and listing them as a peculiar name on the nutrition label.  Researchers think that the listed “N,N-diethyl-phenylethylamine” is actually N,alpha-di-ethylphenylethylamine.  If this is proved true, then Driven Sports did in fact include an amphetamine analogue in the product.

Close to Meth

If you were to attach a methyl group to Beta-phenylethylamine, you can protect the substance from enzymes and therefore boost the stimulant activity.  So what has happened is the harmless compound gets turned into the street drug amphetamine.  If you attach one more methyl group, then you get methamphetamine, otherwise known as “Meth.”  The substance that the researchers found in Craze was one that is created by attaching two ethyl (not methyl) groups to beta-phenylethylamine.  It is called N,alpha-di-ethylphenylethylamine.


No research has been done on humans.  In fact, the only research done with this compound has been on animals.  Knoll Pharmaceuticals patented it in 1988 and considered marketing it as a stimulant.  Knoll calculated the effective human dosing should be around 10-150mgs and the most suitable being 30mgs.  Interestingly enough, when the researchers measured the amount of the drug in Craze, it proved to be between 21 and 35mgs per scoop.  Iiiiiiinteresting.

Driven Sports has announced that this substance naturally occurs in the dendrobium orchid and Craze includes extracts of this plant.  This sounds remarkably similar to the Jack3d case about a year ago.  Plant “extracts” always seem to be the go-to for supplement companies in hot water.  Researchers say it is highly unlikely that Craze contains these extracts causing such a measured dose.  Below is a quote from them.  Stay safe my friends.





Drug Testing and Analysis. Article first published online: 14 Oct 2013. DOI: 10.1002/dta.1578.

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