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  • New test may stop future cheaters

    Read an article yesterday on this site which says scientists have developed a test for "Gene Doping". Can we talk about this in current events?
    Will this mean the sport is going to be a little bit safer from cheaters?
    Did anyone know that this was the direction con artists were taking?
    Why are we afraid to have these discussions?

    Will we have to re-do the record book?

  • #2
    Re: New test may stop future cheaters

    I think it is OK to talk about a new test for gene doping but you should do so with a healthy skepticism especially given how successful regular dope testing can be.

    As someone with a little experience in molecular genetics, I'm pretty sure that it would be near impossible to develop a single test able to uncover all potential types of genetic manipulation. Just think about the number of genes involved, the many different types of manipulations possible and the many different regions of the body where these manipulations could have been applied.

    In fact, I think it would be very difficult to develop a test that would detect any type of gene doping unless you knew what it was in advance. Consequently, I think Arne Ljungqvist and the other IOC medical commission "experts" were being somewhat disingenuous in suggesting that such a test is imminent.

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    • #3
      Re: New test may stop future cheaters

      I was a Molecular Biologist before becoming a Physician. There are two areas that make sense in gene doping. The nervous system and the muscular system. This narrows the field down so
      a plausable test could be developed. The PED developers are out there and trying to stay ahead
      of WADA and others. I am almost at the point of wanting to allow Athletic performance by any
      means necessary. I'm tired of some taking unfair advantage of those who want to do it the right way. The profit potential is the leading factor in the way things are being handled today.
      the announcement may have scared off a couple of cheats and put them on their guard to run clean. This will make for more pleasurable competition.

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      • #4
        Re: New test may stop future cheaters

        Originally posted by trackinblack2
        I was a Molecular Biologist before becoming a Physician. There are two areas that make sense in gene doping. The nervous system and the muscular system. This narrows the field down so
        a plausable test could be developed. The PED developers are out there and trying to stay ahead
        of WADA and others. I am almost at the point of wanting to allow Athletic performance by any
        means necessary. I'm tired of some taking unfair advantage of those who want to do it the right way. The profit potential is the leading factor in the way things are being handled today.
        the announcement may have scared off a couple of cheats and put htem on their guard to run clean. This will make for more pleasurable competition.
        I'm a Molecular Biologist as well. One of the advantages of old doping methods was they were all side-products or side-effects of the medical industry and the authorities didn't want to accept a problem. Now we are finally up upon the drug cheats with more potent detection methods, re-tests and the will to catch them. Gene-doping will be difficult because it's so much more specific
        the side=effects will less likely benefit the sports industry in such massive scale and because an individuals DNA is so unique it will be easy to detect differing nucleartides. While before there wasn't the will to accept what was simple scientific observation on how chemical doping benefits athletes. There is also the advantage that WADA has long expected gene doping to be the next step and been prepared.

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        • #5
          Re: New test may stop future cheaters

          Interesting comments from two newish posters here; I appreciate the commentary.

          I would be interested in what Daisy has to say -- probably not his area of genetics but he likely has some insights/opinions.

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          • #6
            Re: New test may stop future cheaters

            I am highly skeptical about an effective gene doping. Remember the law of unintended consequences. If you think steroids or EPO have side effects, you ain't seen nothing yet. You may build a mouse from Krypton, but it is not going to live long.
            "A beautiful theory killed by an ugly fact."
            by Thomas Henry Huxley

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            • #7
              Re: New test may stop future cheaters

              Originally posted by Pego
              I am highly skeptical about an effective gene doping. Remember the law of unintended consequences. If you think steroids or EPO have side effects, you ain't seen nothing yet. You may build a mouse from Krypton, but it is not going to live long.
              If you build a mouse from an inert gas, it's life expectancy has to be pretty low.

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              • #8
                Re: New test may stop future cheaters

                Originally posted by eldanielfire

                I'm a Molecular Biologist as well.

                .........because an individuals DNA is so unique it will be easy to detect differing nucleartides

                I think you are confusing the 0.1% of DNA used for DNA profiling with the 99.9% of human DNA sequences that are the same in every person.

                Moreover, the highly conserved genes (ie the important ones) are probably the ones you would want to manipulate most in gene doping and they are mostly the same in everyone.

                Also, remember gene doping can be just a change in expression w/o any change in the underlying gene.

                I think the "easy to detect" idea is fine if you know what you are looking for and where to look but the point is you don't know.

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                • #9
                  Re: New test may stop future cheaters

                  On the Home Board today is an article by Doug Logan,former CEO of
                  USATF. It appears he has changed his mind about the problem of PED's.
                  and based on re examination of all factors says
                  "Let the best meds win".
                  Those Athletes who go overboard in their pursuit of fame will eventualy
                  perish in ways that will make them known to all. I can't dream of a
                  cheat free sport, but I would like to have all the controversy go away.

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