Wait for Eight Years Before Handing Over Olympic Medals

by Kathy Jones on  July 8, 2012 at 8:18 PM Alcohol & Drug Abuse News   - G J E 4
A British biochemist at University of Essex has come up with a unique method of making sure that athletes who used drugs during the Olympics do not benefit.
 Wait for Eight Years Before Handing Over Olympic Medals
Wait for Eight Years Before Handing Over Olympic Medals

Professor Chris Cooper has said that winners of the medals in this summer's event should not be handed the medals for at least eight years until so that testers have enough time to make sure that the winners have not taken any drugs.

Samples taken from athletes at the London Games will be held for eight years at a new anti-doping laboratory in Harlow, Essex, allowing biochemists time to catch up with substances that are currently undetectable.

This policy of retrospective testing has operated with success before, most notably when the 2008 Olympic 1500m gold medallist Rashid Ramzi, of Bahrain, was stripped of his title in November 2009, a year after crossing the finish line at the Bird's Nest Stadium in Beijing.

Cooper also warned of a potential 'perfect storm' of drugs development as cheating athletes exploit medical breakthroughs by pharmaceutical companies.

"The big pharmaceuticals, they are interested in this pathway, in producing EPO. They may develop new compounds, new molecules, new methods of boosting red blood-cell count," The Independent quoted Professor Cooper, as saying.

"Sports don't have the money to develop these drugs themselves, they might cost 1bn, pounds but the pharmaceutical companies do. These companies do talk to the anti-doping people, and rightly so, but new compounds could still find their way back into sport, long before any effective test for them could be developed," he added.

"Its unlikely athletes will be taking drugs at the actual Olympics, anyone cheating will have done so long beforehand. But we might not find out for many years," he said.

Source: ANI

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