Bio passport compromised by micro-dosing

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Aug 31, 2012
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rhodescl makes a fair point. As you down the dosage, of course you approach non-detectability and no performance gain. The question is how much performance can those pro cyclists get whilst remaining within non-detectable dosages. To get a reliable estimate of that, having a large sample consisting of people whose characteristics are that of pro cycliststs, with treatment administration being tightly controlled, blind with and care taken that every other determinant of performance is fixed over the observation period would be required.
 
Jul 11, 2013
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The CIRC report clearly states this as a potential issue:

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Consequently, despite improvements to the science underlying the ABP, it is still possible for riders to micro-dose using EPO without getting caught. The Commission also heard that riders are confident that they can take a micro-dose of EPO in the evening because it will not show up by the time the doping control officers (“DCO” or “DCOs”) could arrive to test at 6am.
There is absolutely no reason for riders to risk this unless they believe there is a performance increase...

The Stade 2 "study" may not be perfect but microdosing being a problem for the ABP has been raised not only by Ashenden but also "confirmed" in a Lusanne ASOIF report from 2013:

http://inado.org/uploads/3/1/2/9/3129436/asoif_the_athlete_biological_passport_copyright_asoif_-_january_2013.pdf

Limitations of the ABP

• Not all NADOs include test results into ADAMS, sharing of data is difficult. Some athletes have several passports.
• Whereabouts not centralized in ADAMS (e.g. USADA uses SIMON)
• Limits of ADAMS: Form an operational point of view, the software is complicated. SIMON, another system used by organizations, is better designed for managing the activities of the athletes (whereabouts).
• From now on: ABP software is only available with using Adams. So now NADOS are obliged to use ADAMS if they want to use the ABP software. This approach is criticized by NADOs.
• Manpower and capacity: the more data collected, the more documentation exists, the more complex it gets
• Still at the very beginning what interpretations of the profiles is concerned.
• Scientific uncertainty, various interpretations between experts, need of future assessment and scientific development.
• Access to calendar of the athlete needed
• Depending country laws and regulations (e.g. for blood collection, sample transport and data protection)
• An athlete can have two whereabouts failures before being sanctioned for the third
• Testing is not conducted b/w 23:00h and 6:00h so micro-dosing is possible during the night
• Possibility to hemodilute when not coming directly to the doping control after being notified for a PC testing
• An athlete could cheat by constantly using micro doses of EPO, by monitoring the values in ADAMS (knowing that they are just on their limits)
• Transparency of results in ADAMS - a delay of the release to athletes is favored
• Guidelines for PC-Testing do not exist

And I'am sure there's even more to find...
 
Re: Re:

rhodescl said:
The Hitch said:
rhodescl said:
IndianCyclist said:
I think several athletes/teams have already conducted their own research on this and are already masters of microdosing
That's why it would be great if this were an actual scientific study which showed that a given amount of microdosing was undetectable AND produced measurable and significant performance enhancement. The scientific method to demonstrate such things is very well known. The fact that it was seemingly not followed in this case can only mean that the "study" was done with a different purpose in mind.
Thing is though, the fact that microdosing is undetectable and provides a benefit, is already well known. We already know that.

We know because Michael Ashenden said so.
Now that sounds very scientific indeed. An opinion poll of one person is even more convincing than testing of 8 which is, in turn, more convincing than testing 4-6 with 2-4 set aside as a double-blind control group.
Do you know who Ashenden is?
 
Mar 27, 2015
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Re: Re:

Big Doopie said:
Less than 3% improvement in performance in a month. So, one needs much better methods if one wants to transform from an average rider to a GT-contender overnight (or in a couple of weeks).
I don't think so. 3% at this level is absolutely huge.
An average rider with 360W@FTP can improve it to 371W. He's still far away from being a GT-contender. Of course it would be interesting to see a longer study.
 
Re:

SeriousSam said:
rhodescl makes a fair point.
He does, but he pushes the agenda that the broadcast was pushing an agenda.
This was not a scientific study, but the results quite clearly suggest that micro-dosing does have an effect and at the same time can not be traced with the bio-passport. This makes the broadcast worthwhile and should wake up the anti-doping bodies. Btw, I'm an academic scientist with 30+ studies published in ISI journals.
 
Re: Re:

The Hitch said:
rhodescl said:
The Hitch said:
rhodescl said:
IndianCyclist said:
I think several athletes/teams have already conducted their own research on this and are already masters of microdosing
That's why it would be great if this were an actual scientific study which showed that a given amount of microdosing was undetectable AND produced measurable and significant performance enhancement. The scientific method to demonstrate such things is very well known. The fact that it was seemingly not followed in this case can only mean that the "study" was done with a different purpose in mind.
Thing is though, the fact that microdosing is undetectable and provides a benefit, is already well known. We already know that.

We know because Michael Ashenden said so.
Now that sounds very scientific indeed. An opinion poll of one person is even more convincing than testing of 8 which is, in turn, more convincing than testing 4-6 with 2-4 set aside as a double-blind control group.
Do you know who Ashenden is?
I didn't imagine you the espionage type.
 
The bio passport is PR with the uci popping the odd small fish anytime it needs to scare the real users into easing back a bit.

I'd its easy to microdose the boys that head to Tenerife must be doing a little more than micro dosing.
 
Jul 21, 2012
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Re:

harryh said:
neineinei said:
Analysis of the blood profiles of the eight athletes who took part in the experiment demonstrated that they would not have fallen foul of the biological passport’s parameters. As France 2’s report concluded, the experiment demonstrates that “a clean passport is not necessarily the passport of a clean athlete.”
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/french-television-report-shows-how-micro-dosing-can-beat-uci-biological-passport
Less than 3% improvement in performance in a month. So, one needs much better methods if one wants to transform from an average rider to a GT-contender overnight (or in a couple of weeks).
what if you add in some undetectable weight loss drug like AICAR, a training camp at altitude to load up on EPO, and perhaps throw in a few TUEs as well. Sounds better?

pure hypothetical scenario of course.
 
Oct 16, 2010
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don't know what harryh is saying.
In the VO2 max test, an average improvement of 6.1% was recorded.
 
Oct 16, 2010
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Re:

TailWindHome said:
http://inrng.com/2015/05/stade-2-bio-passport-old-news/
inrng focusing on the messenger and trivializing the message.
"the biopassport isn't watertight" my ass.
It's the perfect tool to dope up and fly under the radar.
 
Mar 27, 2015
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Re:

sniper said:
don't know what harryh is saying.
In the VO2 max test, an average improvement of 6.1% was recorded.
while an average gain of 2.1% was reported in the 14km static bike time trial. In the 3,000-metres run, there was an average improvement of 2.8%.
 
I don't know what harryh is saying either, to go back to the 3% improvement.

Example of m/l 3% - La Plagne 1984: Fignon 410W - 46'01" vs. LeMond 398W - 47'08"

That is huge!!!

And Hamilton +10% full genius program equaled roughly 3'30" over a 45 minute climb.

The data comparison in "Not Normal" is pretty consistent, showing +3% at more than a minute.

So 3% micro-dosing, plus a little AICAR, it is not unreasonable to estimate that one can achieve +5% and not worry about being busted.
 
May 26, 2010
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Vaughters silence on this is deafening. But not unsurprising. When a team spends money (half a million) on internal testing it is not to ensure riders are not doping, but to ensure the 'program' is working and undetecable.
 
Aug 4, 2011
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Dopers have always been ahead of the testers. The amount of testing done "athletics most notably" is the reason more are getting caught because they have become complacent. But the ones with the eye one the ball are doping just fine.
 
Jul 5, 2009
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Re: Re:

harryh said:
sniper said:
don't know what harryh is saying.
In the VO2 max test, an average improvement of 6.1% was recorded.
while an average gain of 2.1% was reported in the 14km static bike time trial. In the 3,000-metres run, there was an average improvement of 2.8%.
In cycling, the relationship between change in speed and the power required to do so is roughly to the third power. So a 2.1% reduction in time trial time requires 6 to 10% more power. That's a lot!

John Swanson
 
Jul 11, 2013
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Abstracts of recent ABP studies...

Study Dec 2014:

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/dta.1757/abstract

Thomas Christian Bonne,Carsten Lundby,bAnne Kristine Lundby,cMikael Sander,cJacob Bejderaand Nikolai Baastrup Nordsborga

Altitude training causes haematological fluctuations with relevance for the AthleteBiological Passport

*The impact of altitude training on haematological parameters and the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) was evaluated ininternational-level elite athletes. One group of swimmers lived high and trained high (LHTH, n = 10) for three to four weeks at2130 m or higher whereas a control group (n = 10) completed a three-week training camp at sea-level. Haematological parameterswere determined weekly three times before and four times after the training camps. ABP thresholds for haemoglobin concentra-tion ([Hb]), reticulocyte percentage (RET%), OFF score and the abnormal blood profile score (ABPS) were calculated using theBayesian model. After altitude training, six swimmers exceeded the 99% ABP thresholds: two swimmers exceeded the OFF scorethresholds at day +7; one swimmer exceeded the OFF score threshold at day +28; one swimmer exceeded the threshold for RET%at day +14; and one swimmer surpassed the ABPS threshold at day +14. In the control group, no values exceeded the individualABP reference range. In conclusion, LHTH induces haematological changes in Olympic-level elite athletes which can exceed theindividually generated references in the ABP. Training at altitude should be considered a confounding factor for ABP interpreta-tion for up to four weeks after altitude exposure but does not consistently cause abnormal values in the ABP. Copyright © 2014John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Study 2015:

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/sms.12438/abstract?deniedAccessCustomisedMessage=&userIsAuthenticated=false

J. Bejder1,†, M. F. Hoffmann2,†, M. Ashenden3, N. B. Nordsborg1, K. Karstoft4 andJ. Mørkeberg5,*

Acute hyperhydration reduces athlete biological passport OFF-hr score

Anecdotal evidence suggests that athletes hyperhydrate to mask prohibited substances in urine and potentially counteract suspicious fluctuations in blood parameters in the athlete biological passport (ABP). It is examined if acute hyperhydration changes parameters included in the ABP. Twenty subjects received recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) for 3 weeks. After 10 days of rhEPO washout, 10 subjects ingested normal amount of water (∼ 270 mL), whereas the remaining 10 ingested a 1000 mL bolus of water. Blood variables were measured 20, 40, 60, and 80 min after ingestion. Three days later, the subjects were crossed-over with regard to water ingestion and the procedure was repeated. OFF-hr was reduced by ∼ 4%, ∼ 3%, and ∼ 2% at 40, 60, and 80 min, respectively, after drinking 1000 mL of water, compared with normal water ingestion (P < 0.05). Forty percent of the subjects were identified with atypical blood profiles (99% specificity level) before drinking 1000 mL of water, whereas 11% (n = 18), 10% and 11% (n = 18) were identified 40, 60, and 80 min, respectively, after ingestion. This was different (P < 0.05) compared with normal water intake, where 45% of the subjects were identified before ingestion, and 54% (n = 19), 45%, and 47% (n = 19) were identified 40, 60, and 80 min, respectively, after ingestion. In conclusion, acute hyperhydration reduces ABP OFF-hr and reduces ABP sensitivity.
 
Jul 21, 2012
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Re:

Benotti69 said:
Vaughters silence on this is deafening. But not unsurprising. When a team spends money (half a million) on internal testing it is not to ensure riders are not doping, but to ensure the 'program' is working and undetecable.
JV is always silent when things look bad for his everything is now clean agenda.
 
Re: Re:

harryh said:
Big Doopie said:
Less than 3% improvement in performance in a month. So, one needs much better methods if one wants to transform from an average rider to a GT-contender overnight (or in a couple of weeks).
I don't think so. 3% at this level is absolutely huge.
An average rider with 360W@FTP can improve it to 371W. He's still far away from being a GT-contender. Of course it would be interesting to see a longer study.
As others have explained here, a 3% improvement in time does not equate to a 3% improvement in power. In fact, it is much more.

It is the difference between donkey and racehorse.
 
I see the bio passport just like a more complex extension of the 50% rule... a more sophisticated prevention tool. A prevention from harmful consequences, not the doping, apparently. And it's become the guideline for the professionals, unfortunately.
Any educated pharmacist (even a graduate student) should be able to calculate untraceable amount of any substance in any timespan.
This micro-dosing research surely hasn't surprised anybody involved in the sport.
The thing I'd like to learn is: is it the micro-dosed epo what increased the resilience of the sprinters/rouleurs on the unfavourable terrain, or there's something new in the peloton?
Am I in minority thinking that surprising improvements have shifted towards the heavier end of the peloton and the races/stages have become less selective?
 

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