University of Glasgow Epo Research Study

Oct 22, 2012

Administration of recombinant human erythropoietin (Epo) improves endurance performance. Hence Epo is allegedly frequently subject to abuse by athletes, although the use of Epo is prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

In order to develop new improved testing methods to detect Epo abuse, a previous WADA founded project took place at the University of Glasgow between 2010-2012. We successfully found gene blood markers which have the potential to add a new dimension to the detection of Epo doping. Given the very promising results, we will now validate this new blood genetic approach using a "double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover" trial* in this new WADA founded project.

*​​​​​ In​ a "double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover" trial, the volunteers are assigned in two groups. The groups each have the different treatments in turn (Epo or placebo). A placebo is a dummy treatment which looks like the real thing but is not. It contains no active ingredient. Finally, both the volunteers and the experimenters will not know in which treatment group you are in until the end of the entire study.