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Wednesday 15, Jun 2016

  Doping Is ‘Endemic’ In Cycling, Says Whistleblower

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Dan Stevens, the whistleblower at the centre of the investigation by Sunday Times into the practices of Dr Mark Bonar, has issued a warning that doping is an “endemic” problem in cycling.

The 40-year-old amateur cyclist, who was prescribed banned performance enhancing products by Dr Bonar, said doping may have become far more sophisticated in the upper echelons of the sport and added other doctors like Bonar are operating. Stevens made these comments while providing evidence in front of a parliamentary committee. The chair of UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) admitted to shortcomings in its handling of intelligence relating to Dr Mark Bonar.

Speaking before the parliamentary committee, Stevens explained how he was able to pick up drugs like Erythropoietin (EPO) at high street chemists. The amateur cyclist added the problem does not stop at Dr Bonar and further commented that other doctors around the country are engaging in similar practices. Stevens said there are a number of other doctors working out of anti-ageing clinics and added there are a number of anti ageing doctors in the UK advertising that they will provide human growth hormone and testosterone for anti-ageing purposes.

Stevens described how met Bonar on the internet and ended up with prescriptions for EPO, human growth hormone, and thyroxin over the course of several visits. The cyclist said he experienced “huge effects” and a “15 to 20 per cent performance gain” during the three-month period in which he was taking the products.

Dan Stevens was called upon by UK Anti-Doping in January 2014 to provide an out-of-competition sample but refused to comply. He was given a ban of two years and then approached UK Anti-Doping to provide information relating to Bonar in the hope of seeing that ban reduced. Stevens said he provided evidence on Bonar but was told by the body’s head of legal, Graham Arthur, that it was “of little to no use” and his ban was upheld. Stevens later provided evidence to Cycling Independent Reform Commission (CIRC) that recommended his ban be reduced to 21 months, which was honored by UKAD.

Stevens repeatedly used the word “endemic” for describing the issues faced by cycling and the sport as a whole. He commented there is not a lot of testing going on in amateur cycling and added we are a long way behind what athletes could be using at elite level. Stevens remarked people at amateur level are potentially using what elites were using 15 years ago and the elites could be using far, far more sophisticated stuff. Stevens also remarked Erythropoietin has been around for over 15 years and there are a strong of new substances and chemicals that are “potentially undetectable” that could be used on top of in or even to mask it while highlighting the names of Beloranib, Myo-inositol trispyrophosphate (ITTP), GW1516, and AICAR.

The cyclist also said the problem starts before people are becoming athletes. Stevens highlighted the easy availability of information on the internet regarding doping practices and on sports forums like bodybuilding and claimed it is so easy for any athlete of any level to get introduced to banned products even at their local gym.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Doping Is ‘Endemic’ In Cycling, Says Whistleblower

Monday 10, Aug 2009

  Pills to enhance exercise in the pipeline

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Pills to enhance exercise in the pipelineScientists in the United States have claimed to find two possible drugs, AICAR and GW1516, which can help people, especially sportsmen, to exercise for longer. The discovery of these two drugs is controversial in a sense that it may give an ‘unfair’ advantage to sportsmen like steroids and even to those who do not move a muscle.

These two drugs have been understood to build muscle mass, burn fat, and increase level of stamina.

It is believed that the two drugs will help sportsmen improve training methodologies besides gaining optimum benefits to deliver dramatic on-field performance. It will be worthwhile however to note the reaction of doping and sporting bodies on these drugs as they have been raising concerns about the use of steroids in sports till now.

Tuesday 05, Aug 2008

  Would AICAR and GW1516 displace steroids?

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AICAR-steroidsAs if they don’t have enough problems on their hands right now, here comes another set of performance-enhancing drugs that Olympic organizers have to test for.

The revolutionary AICAR and GW1516 are the newest buddies of athletes, and anti-doping authorities are scrambling to screen for these exercise-in-a-pill compounds. There are so called because they imitate the physiological effect of exercise in the body.

These drugs are welcome news for individuals who suffer obesity, metabolic disorders, and muscular dystrophy. These oral compounds work by “genetically reprogramming muscle fibers so they use energy better and contract repeatedly without fatigue.” This means that those who use AICAR and GW1516 need not do actual exercise and yet could shed unwanted fat. No wonder these two are now touted as miracle pills.

Excerpt from the Emax Health report:

Researchers have identified two drugs, AICAR and GW1516, that mimic many of the physiological effects of exercise. The drugs increase the ability of cells to burn fat and are the first compounds that have been shown to enhance exercise endurance.

Ronald M. Evans, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator who led the study, said drugs that mimic exercise could offer potent protection against obesity and related metabolic disorders. They could also help counter the effects of devastating muscle-wasting diseases like muscular dystrophy. Evans and his colleagues, who are at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, published their findings on July 31, 2008, in an advance online publication in the journal Cell.

Concerned about the potential for abuse of the two performance-enhancing drugs AICAR and GW1516, Evans has also developed a test to detect the substances in the blood and urine of athletes who may be looking for way to gain an edge on the competition.

Like exercise, AICAR and GW1516 trigger a variety of changes that contribute to muscles cells’ improved endurance and ability to burn fat. These changes include an increase in mitochondria, the structures responsible for producing energy; a shift in metabolism that takes advantage of lipids as an energy source; and an increase in blood flow, which enables the steady delivery of fat to burn. While the scientists only examined the drugs’ effects on muscle cells in this study, Evans says it is likely that they confer benefits on other systems impacted by exercise, such as the heart and lungs.

Based on his group’s findings, Evans is optimistic about using small molecules that mimic exercise to treat and prevent a variety of common conditions. For example, the way in which AICAR and GW1516 transformed the muscle fibers of mice suggests they might help reverse the muscle frailty associated with aging or diseases like muscular dystrophy. “We have now created the potential for a really simple intervention in an area of major health problems for which there is no intervention,” he says.

Evans expects these types of drugs will be attractive to a variety of individuals. “If you like exercise, you like the idea of getting more bang for your buck,” he says of GW1516. “If you don’t like exercise, you love the idea of getting the benefits from a pill,” as with AICAR. So, while Evans sees tremendous opportunities for health benefits from drugs that mimic exercise, he also sees serious potential for abuse.

However, these drugs were experimented only on lab rats so their effects on humans could not be precisely determined. And bad news for athletes who want to use these performance boosters since a test has already been developed to detect both of these substances in blood and urine samples. The test has been provided by Ronald Evans, head of the research investigation. According to Evans, this is to disabuse athletes from using AICAR and GW1516 to gain edge in sport competitions.

Concerned about the potential for abuse, Evans thought it was important to develop a test that could detect whether the drug was being used as a performance-enhancing substance. With HHMI support, his group has created a highly sensitive test that uses mass spectrometry to detect the two drugs and their metabolic by-products in the blood or urine. While the test is very reliable in mice, Evans says that further analyses are needed to ensure that it is accurate in humans. Evans, HHMI and the World Anti-Doping Agency are now working to certify the detection system and make it available in time to retroactively test athletes who compete in the 2008 Olympics.

Sunday 03, Aug 2008

  New pill to replace anabolic steroids

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Scientists have finally come up with a pill to replace anabolic steroids!  This new pill tricks your body into thinking it just exercised, so you can develop strength, speed, muscle mass, endurance, hardness and more.  Anabolic Steroids are, of course, based on increasing testosterone levels; however, this new pill increases muscle mass via tricking the muscle into believe it just had a workout.  It rebuilds the ‘lost’ muscle tissue, aka increasing muscle size, even without the workout.

What’s the ethical implication of such a drug? well expect this drug to be abused by every athlete to build speed and mass.  It will be the next steroid craze, and just wait until it’s in the open market.  Most Olympic coaches will probably give it to athletes as performance enhancing drugs.

Scientists have developed two new exercise pills which help by tricking your body into thinking you took part in exercise, without actually having you work as hard. It is currently believed to be a big tool for weight loss, but may also replace steroids, improving the strength, speed, and endurance of athletes.

Scientists have managed to develop two new pills, with details on them being published in the journal Cell.

There are two possible pills, both with the ability to help build muscle, increase stamina, and help with weight loss.

U.S. scientists have managed to develop two drugs, AICAR and GW1516.

For their study, they split young adult mice up into two groups, with half of them taking part in exercise with the pill, and half taking part in exercise without the pill.

The mice who took the pill were able to run for farther and faster, improving their endurance and speed.

The mice who took the pill were able to 77% longer, and 44% farther after a month taking the pill.

Many already forsee that athletes may be abusing the drug, which is why a test has been developed to check for the drug in urine and blood samples.