WADA will trial the brand new testing technique on the delayed Tokyo Olympics this yr.© AFP
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) mentioned Friday it’s going to trial the usage of dried blood spot testing on the Tokyo Olympics, an revolutionary new method hailed as a possible “game-changer” within the struggle towards drug cheats. Speaking following a digital assembly of the worldwide anti-doping watchdog’s board and govt committee, WADA President Witold Banka mentioned the brand new technique would complement current anti-doping methods. Dried blood spot testing — during which small samples are collected from a finger prick and blotted onto an absorbent card — may mark a brand new period in anti-doping, ultimately permitting for extra athletes to be focused and extra assessments to be carried out, Banka mentioned.
“It has the potential to make a significant positive impact for both athletes and anti-doping organisations,” Banka mentioned. “I truly believe that it could be a real game-changer in anti-doping.”
While WADA mentioned the brand new technique could be trialled at this yr’s delayed Tokyo Olympics, testers hoped to have the method in “routine” use by subsequent February’s Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Beijing.
WADA mentioned dried blood spot testing allowed for larger evaluation of unstable compounds and made it simpler to check athletes in distant areas around the globe, the place conventional blood samples had been typically troublesome to move.
“Given the logistical and cost advantages, DBS will allow testing authorities to target more athletes and collect more samples,” Banka mentioned, describing it as a “great step forward” for anti-doping.
Olivier Rabin, WADA’s head of science, mentioned dried blood spot samples had been additionally cheaper to gather.
“Currently when we transport blood samples, we transport in vials. This time we only transport a piece of paper,” Rabin mentioned.
“There can also be a major saving by way of storage of the samples, as a result of the amount that must be saved is far decrease.
“It’s a lot simpler to retailer playing cards with dried blood spots on them than vials of blood and even urine.”
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