T Nation

Fears Of Gene Doping Realised


Apocalypse now: fears of gene doping are realised



The Times February 02, 2006

Apocalypse now: fears of gene doping are realised
By Owen Slot
A new substance has emerged that suggests the next stage in the drugs battle has started

THE grim new world of gene doping, for so long viewed as the apocalyptic future of illegal performance-enhancement in sport, has dawned in Germany. Experts had been concerned that advances in gene therapy would start to impact on sport by the time of the Beijing Olympics in 2008. However, evidence from a court case in Magdeburg, Germany, suggests that a new brand of cheats could be injecting in time for the Turin Winter Games, which start next week.

Gene doping is the big fear among those fighting for clean sport. It involves manipulation of the human genetic code and thus evades standard detection methods. And a German court has identified the distribution among coaches of a substance called Repoxygen, which works in this way to produce erythropoietin (EPO) indigenously.

?You would have to be blind not to see that the next generation of doping will be genetic,? Dick Pound, the chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency, told scientists only two months ago. It seems that this next generation has arrived.

Evidence of gene doping has been stumbled upon at the trial of Thomas Springstein, the coach and partner of Grit Breuer, twice the European 400 metres champion, who was banned for taking the stimulant Clenbuterol. Springstein is accused of supplying steroids to female athletes that he has been coaching in Germany; the body of evidence against him was fortified by a police raid on the home he shares with Breuer, during which 20 chemical substances were said to have been found, 12 of which are yet to be identified.

Also removed from their house was Springstein?s laptop. At the start of his trial, Springstein?s lawyer failed in his plea to keep private the contents of his e-mail inbox. Certain e-mails were read out in court and it was in one exchange with the doctor of a Dutch speed-skating club that the incriminating evidence was allegedly discovered. Among a large number of doping products discussed, the prosecution claims, was the use of the aforementioned ground-breaker, Repoxygen.


holy chit, I wanna be wolverine. I gotta get ahold of some of this stuff.


I love it. This is the biggest fuck you to the people who want to invade an athlete's privacy and control what they do in their free time. Drug testing has done nothing but stop the progress in my favorite sport, and I hope it finally dies a miserable death.


Anyone remember the muscle rats and that huge steer which had even facial hypertrophy? Looks like in the future every jerk-off will be able to have a strong good looking body. But this decade is still ours!!!


I volunteered for the study in athletes John Hopkins U. was conducting shortly after the gene was discovered in those rats. I thought they were going to actually modify my DNA but all they did was take a blood sample. Rather disappointing.