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IAAF plans ‘comprehensive blood testing’ at Moscow 2013

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A comprehensive blood testing programme will be organised at the IAAF World Championships, Moscow, Russia, as part of a sophisticated anti-doping programme for the 14th edition of the championships which take place from 10th to 18th August 2013.

Two years ago the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) collected blood samples from all athletes taking part in the 2011 IAAF World Championships in Daegu, Korea.

That anti-doping programme which was conducted in close co-operation with the Lausanne WADA-accredited Anti-Doping Laboratory and with the support of the World Anti-Doping Agency and local partners was unprecedented in world sport history. It was the first time that nearly 2000 elite athletes competing in a major sports event were blood tested under the same optimal conditions, within the same time period.

The blood testing in Moscow will be conducted in support of the Athlete Biological Passport programme. As in Daegu, It will cover all disciplines in Athletics and a wide range of relevant biomarkers.

Notably, the analyses will not only screen markers indicating the use of EPO or blood manipulation in endurance events but also markers potentially indicating steroid or growth hormone doping more relevant to the power disciplines.

Suspicious results from the screening analyses performed on-site could, where appropriate, trigger follow-up target tests in Moscow in urine (notably for EPO) and/or further analyses for prohibited substances or prohibited methods in blood in Lausanne.

All results can ultimately be used in support of an anti-doping rule violation if an athlete’s overall biological profile is found to be consistent with the use of a prohibited substance or a prohibited method, in accordance with IAAF Anti-Doping Rules and Regulations.

500 urine samples

The blood testing programme in Moscow will be organised in addition to the regular doping controls that are collected at ever IAAF World Championships. Moscow 2013 will witness a programme of approximately 500 urine samples, in and out-of-competition combined.

In accordance with the IAAF policy implemented for the first time in 2005 at the World Championships in Helsinki, urine samples collected in Moscow will be kept for long-term storage for possible re-analyses at a later stage in anticipation of new scientific developments.

The Anti-doping laboratory which will be used to process samples at the World Championships is accredited by WADA, and has not only been used for many years for testing in athletics but will also handle samples collected at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.

Nonetheless, as is usual at IAAF World Championships the testing process in Moscow will be carried out under additional IAAF control. All the analytical process in Moscow will be supervised onsite at the laboratory by IAAF scientific experts, Prof. Martial Saugy and Dr. Neil Robinson from the WADA-accredited Anti-Doping Laboratory in Lausanne.

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