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Amy B. Cadwallader and Bob Murray

Whenever athletes willfully or accidentally ingest performance-enhancing drugs or other banned substances (such as drugs of abuse), markers of those drugs can be detected in biological samples (e.g., biofluids: urine, saliva, blood); in the case of some drugs, that evidence can be apparent for many weeks following the last exposure to the drug. In addition to the willful use of prohibited drugs, athletes can accidentally ingest banned substances in contaminated dietary supplements or foods and inadvertently fail a drug test that could mean the end of an athletic career and the loss of a good reputation. The proliferation of performance-enhancing drugs and methods has required a corresponding increase in the analytical tools and methods required to identify the presence of banned substances in biofluids. Even though extraordinary steps have been taken by organizations such as the World Anti-Doping Agency to limit the use of prohibited substances and methods by athletes willing to cheat, it is apparent that some athletes continue to avoid detection by using alternative doping regimens or taking advantage of the limitations in testing methodologies. This article reviews the testing standards and analytical techniques underlying the procedures used to identify banned substances in biological samples, setting the stage for future summaries of the testing required to establish the use of steroids, stimulants, diuretics, and other prohibited substances.

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Maria Kavussanu and Christopher Ring

likelihood (e.g., Kavussanu et al., 2016 ), as proxies for doping behavior. In line with previous research ( Kavussanu et al., 2016 ; Ring & Kavussanu, 2017 ), we asked participants to report their likelihood of doping in two hypothetical situations, in which they could use a banned substance to (a

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Ronald J. Maughan, Louise M. Burke, Jiri Dvorak, D. Enette Larson-Meyer, Peter Peeling, Stuart M. Phillips, Eric S. Rawson, Neil P. Walsh, Ina Garthe, Hans Geyer, Romain Meeusen, Luc van Loon, Susan M. Shirreffs, Lawrence L. Spriet, Mark Stuart, Alan Vernec, Kevin Currell, Vidya M. Ali, Richard G.M. Budgett, Arne Ljungqvist, Margo Mountjoy, Yannis Pitsiladis, Torbjørn Soligard, Uğur Erdener, and Lars Engebretsen

Nutrition usually makes a small but potentially valuable contribution to successful performance in elite athletes, and dietary supplements can make a minor contribution to this nutrition program. Nonetheless, supplement use is widespread at all levels of sport. Products described as supplements target different issues, including the management of micronutrient deficiencies, supply of convenient forms of energy and macronutrients, and provision of direct benefits to performance or indirect benefits such as supporting intense training regimens. The appropriate use of some supplements can offer benefits to the athlete, but others may be harmful to the athlete’s health, performance, and/or livelihood and reputation if an anti-doping rule violation results. A complete nutritional assessment should be undertaken before decisions regarding supplement use are made. Supplements claiming to directly or indirectly enhance performance are typically the largest group of products marketed to athletes, but only a few (including caffeine, creatine, specific buffering agents and nitrate) have good evidence of benefits. However, responses are affected by the scenario of use and may vary widely between individuals because of factors that include genetics, the microbiome, and habitual diet. Supplements intended to enhance performance should be thoroughly trialed in training or simulated competition before implementation in competition. Inadvertent ingestion of substances prohibited under the anti-doping codes that govern elite sport is a known risk of taking some supplements. Protection of the athlete’s health and awareness of the potential for harm must be paramount, and expert professional opinion and assistance is strongly advised before embarking on supplement use.

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Ina Garthe and Ronald J. Maughan

, but, without the necessary resources to do tests and follow-up, the effect will continue to be limited. The government systems of regulations and independent manufacturing quality programs do not include specific laboratory testing for banned substances according the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA

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Peter Peeling, Linda M. Castell, Wim Derave, Olivier de Hon, and Louise M. Burke

either unaware that they are banned or are confused by technical/chemical names. For example, DMAA is a banned substance and has been included in supplements under a variety of other names including geranium oil/extract or geranamine; this no doubt contributed to many publicized and less well-known cases

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Laurie B. Patterson, Susan H. Backhouse, and Sergio Lara-Bercial

historical investigations because they had been involved in doping behaviours at a number of levels, from condoning and promoting to administering and supplying banned substances (e.g.,  Dubin, 1990 ; Ungerleider, 2001 ; Fainaru-Wada & Williams, 2006 ). To the present day, coaches continue to be implicated

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Judy Liao and Pirkko Markula

In November 2010, the US media reported that basketball player Diana Taurasi tested positive for a banned substance while playing in Turkey. In this study, we explore the media coverage of Taurasi’s positive drug test from a Deleuzian perspective. We consider the media coverage as an assemblage (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987; Malins, 2004) to analyze how Taurasi’s drug using body is articulated with the elite female sporting body in the coverage of her doping incident (Markula, 2004; Wise, 2011). Our analysis demonstrates that Taurasi’s position as a professional basketball player in the US dominated the discussion to legitimize her exoneration of banned substance use. In addition, Turkey, its “amateur” sport and poor drug control procedure, was located to the periphery to normalize a certain type of professionalism, doping control, and body as the desirable elements of sporting practice.

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Angela L. Spence, Marc Sim, Grant Landers, and Peter Peeling

Both caffeine (CAF) and pseudoephedrine (PSE) are proposed to be central nervous system stimulants. However, during competition, CAF is a permitted substance, whereas PSE is a banned substance at urinary levels >150 μg·ml−1. As a result, this study aimed to compare the effect of CAF versus PSE use on cycling time trial (TT) performance to explore whether the legal stimulant was any less ergogenic than the banned substance. Here, 10 well-trained male cyclists or triathletes were recruited for participation. All athletes were required to attend the laboratory on four separate occasions—including a familiarization trial and three experimental trials, which required participants to complete a simulated 40 km (1,200 kJ) cycling TT after the ingestion of either 200 mg CAF, 180 mg PSE or a nonnutritive placebo (PLA). The results showed that the total time taken and the mean power produced during each TT was not significantly different (p > .05) between trials, despite a 1.3% faster overall time (~57 s) after CAF consumption. Interestingly, the time taken to complete the second half of the TT was significantly faster (p < .05) in CAF as compared with PSE (by 99 s), with magnitude based inferences suggesting a 91% beneficial effect of CAF during the second half of the TT. This investigation further confirms the ergogenic benefits of CAF use during TT performances and further suggests this legal CNS stimulant has a better influence than a supra-therapeutic dose of PSE.

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Caroline Berry and Dale R. Wagner


Pseudoephedrine (PSE) is an over-the-counter decongestant that might have ergogenic effects. The World Anti-Doping Agency has prohibited large doses (>150 μg/mL) of PSE, while the National College Athletic Association (NCAA) does not include it on their banned-substance list.


This study examined the effect of body-weight dosing of PSE on 800-m-run times of NCAA female runners.


Fifteen NCAA female track athletes volunteered to participate in the randomized, double-blind, crossover design. Participants were given 2.5 mg/kg PSE or placebo in trials separated by a week. Ninety minutes postingestion, participants completed an 800-m individual time trial on an indoor track. Finishing time was recorded with an automated video timing device. Heart rate and anxiety state scores were recorded immediately after each trial.


Fourteen runners completed both trials, and 1 was an outlier: N = 13. Despite the dose being well above normal therapeutic levels (144 ± 17 mg), there was no significant difference (P = .92) in 800-m times between PSE (2:39.447 ± 9.584) and placebo (2:39.372 ± 9.636) trials, in postexercise heart rate (P = .635; PSE = 177.9 ± 14.5 beats/min, placebo = 178.4 ± 18.5 beats/min), or in anxiety-state levels (P = .650; PSE = 38.4 ± 11.6, placebo = 38.1 ± 8.8).


A 2.5-mg/kg dose of PSE had no effect on 800-m performance for female NCAA runners. More research is needed to determine if PSE should be a specified banned substance.

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Danny P. Goel, Jonathan D. Geiger, Jacqueline J. Shan, Dean Kriellaars, and Grant N. Pierce

Nutraceuticals may induce doping infractions through contamination of the product itself or their ingestion might be metabolized within the body to create a positive doping control test. We tested this possibility using a commercially available, proprietary ginseng root extract (Cold-FX®, CV Technologies Inc., Edmonton, AB). After athletes ingested Cold-FX© for 28 d at 400 mg/d, urine samples were collected and processed under strict IOC doping control guidelines and then analyzed for a full screen of IOC banned/restricted substances by an IOC-approved laboratory. There were no positive tests for any banned substances in any of the subjects. Our study demonstrates that ingestion of Cold-FX® for 28 d at 400 mg/d does not represent a doping concern for athletes. Carefully controlled clinical studies like this one are necessary to provide the athlete, the nutraceutical industry and IOC regulatory bodies with information to avoid inadvertent exposure to banned/restricted or potentially unhealthy substances.