Blood doping was prevalent in nearly one-fifth of the athletes in endurance events at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu and 2013 in Moscow, according to a study conducted at the University of Lausanne.
"Our results from solid hematological parameters give an estimate of an overall blood doping prevalence of 18% on average for endurance athletes," the authors said in the key points of their study, recalling that Positive controls (urine and blood) in laboratory analyzes accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) remain below 2%.
To carry out their work, the authors had access to the blood tests of 1,222 athletes participating in endurance events (walking and running from 800 m) and compared the results with reference populations, using seven biological parameters that can vary. with doping, especially with EPO or via blood transfusions.
According to the results, women (22% on average) were more affected than men (15%) in Daegu, a report that was reversed in Moscow (15% on average, of which 12% for women, 17 % at men's). The results are detailed for some countries, but they are not named.
According to the authors of the study, the data show that the introduction of the biological passport by the IAAF in 2011 did not significantly reduce the presence of blood doping in 2013.
But its development and "vigilant monitoring of biological parameters remains the strongest approach to combat athletes using undetectable doping methods" during traditional controls, such as autotransfusions.
The study was launched by the anti-doping laboratory in Lausanne and was conducted by researchers from the Anti-Doping Science and Research Center (REDs) at the University of Lausanne. The work was partly funded by WADA and the International Athletics Federation (IAAF).
© 2019 AFP