London Marathon Runner’s Death May Be Linked to Stimulant

The death of a London Marathon runner who posthumously raised a record 1 million pounds ($1.6 million) in charity donations may have been partly caused by a now-banned stimulant, the British Broadcasting Corp. reported.

Englishwoman Claire Squires, 30, collapsed and died less than a mile from the finish of the 26.2-mile race last April. She’d been raising money for the Samaritans, a U.K. counseling service for people with depression.

An inquest at London’s Southwark Coroners’ Court today heard that the drug DMAA, a food supplement that hadn’t been banned at the time, had been found in her system, the BBC reported on its website.

“She had taken a supplement containing DMAA which, on the balance of probabilities, in combination with extreme physical exertion, caused acute cardiac failure, which resulted in her death,” coroner Philip Barlow told the court today.

The court heard Squires had put a scoop of a product containing DMAA in her water bottle before the race.

DMAA, also referred to as 1,3-dimethylamylamine or geranium oil and used as a workout or weight-loss aid, was banned by the U.K.’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency in August “amid concerns of potential risks to public safety,” it said at the time.

To contact the reporter on this story: Danielle Rossingh in London at drossingh@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at celser@bloomberg.net.

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