May 18, 2009 / 10:54 PM / 10 years ago

Porn star Marilyn Chambers died of heart disease

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Porn star Marilyn Chambers, who was found dead at the age of 56 at her Los Angeles-area home in April, died of complications of heart disease, coroner’s officials said on Monday.

In this file photo Adult film star Marilyn Chambers (L) and actress Tracy Hutson, who portrays Chambers in the movie "Rated X," pose at the film's premiere at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, in Beverly Hills April 27, 2000. REUTERS/Str Old

The body of Chambers, who starred in “Behind the Green Door,” one of the first pornographic films to be released widely in the United States, was found at her suburban Canyon Country home on April 12.

Los Angeles coroner’s officials said at the time that Chambers had likely died of natural causes despite her relatively young age.

The autopsy and toxicology tests confirmed she had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and aneurysm related to heart disease.

Toxicology tests showed the presence of the painkiller hydrocodone and the antidepressant Citalopram in Chambers’ bloodstream but not in amounts that could have caused her death, coroner’s officials said.

The former Marilyn Ann Taylor began in show business as a model, appearing as the blond cover girl on the Ivory Snow soap box, where she posed holding a baby under the tag line “99 & 44/100% pure”.

She broke into the adult film industry by appearing in 1972’s “Behind the Green Door,” which caused a stir in part because Chambers was seen having sex with African-American porn star Johnny Keyes.

Chambers appeared in more than two dozen adult films, including several with the late porn star John Holmes, who died of AIDS complications in 1988, and she had flings with careers in music and politics.

She ran for U.S. vice president in 2004 on the Personal Choice Party ticket and released the disco single “Benihana” in 1976.

Chambers had a bit part in the 1970 Barbra Streisand film “The Owl and the Pussycat,” and starred in the 1977 David Cronenberg horror movie “Rabid.”

Editing by Jill Serjeant

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