Five students from Buena Vista University remain hospitalized after consuming excessive amounts of caffeine as part of a class experiment. The research project was part of a human physiology class taught by assistant professor of biology Kristy McClellan.
The study began Monday afternoon and after a couple of hours, the students began showing the effects of excessive caffeine ingestion and were taken to Buena Vista Regional Medical Center in Storm Lake. Medical authorities estimate the students ingested about 6,000 milligrams of caffeine.
A dose becomes a threat of body functions at about 6,200 milligrams. The students remain hospitalized for observation. University Dean of Students Doctor Meg McKeon, in a University-wide e-mail, said the administration is very concerned and is conducting an investigation.
McKeon says McClellan has been placed on administrative leave pending completion of the investigation and all experiments involving physical activity or changes in human subjects on campus have been suspended until further notice.
By Joel Hermann, KAYL, Storm Lake