Three Brazilian UFC fighters have accepted reduced suspensions from USADA after the UFC’s anti-doping partner identified compounding pharmacies that allegedly sold tainted supplements.
A press release from USADA today announced that former UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos, light heavyweight standout Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and light heavyweight Marcos Rogerio de Lima have accepted six-month terms after their supplements were traced back to the pharmacies. They are immediately eligible to return to competition.
Compounding pharmacies prepare medications onsite per written prescriptions from patients, unlike commercial pharmacies and drugstores that sell from inventory.
According to the USADA release, the pharmacies that allegedly produced the tainted supplements are unnamed, but they are located in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. A request for comment wasn’t immediately returned.
“In addition to medications, both compounding pharmacies investigated
by USADA also produced and sold nutritional supplements, and marketed their products as a safe alternative to mass produced medications and supplements,” the USADA’s release stated. “The pharmacies also claimed to utilize manufacturing processes designed to eliminate the possibility of cross-contamination.”
USADA took supplements provided by Dos Santos, Nogueira and de Lima to the WADA-accredited The Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory in Salt Lake City, which confirmed they were contaminated with hydrochlorothiazide, anastrozole, and several additional prohibited substances.
Dos Santos, who was scratched from a UFC 215 bout against Francis Ngannou, tested positive for hydrochlorothiazide, as did Nogueira, who was pulled from a bout against Jared Cannonier at UFC on FOX 26. De Lima tested positive for hydrochlorothiazide and anastrozole, and was pulled from a bout against Saparbek Safarov at UFC Fight Night 115.
According to the release, the fighters all took the supplements at the direction of their respective physicians or nutritionists.
Hydrochlorothiazide is a diuretic that can be used as a masking agent. Anastrozole is an estrogen blocker in the category of hormone and metabolic modulators. Both are banned by USADA at all times.
“We appreciate the cooperation of the athletes and international authorities in getting to the bottom of this situation, as it will hopefully prevent these problems from occurring in the future,” USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart stated in the release. “It’s unacceptable that these compounding pharmacies produced contaminated supplements for the public. And it’s another unfortunate example of why athletes must use extreme caution if using nutritional supplements.
“All too often, supplement products contain undeclared substances, including prohibited drugs, that can be dangerous to an athlete’s health. We are doing all we can to ensure that these types of suppliers are held accountable for introducing dangerous products like these into the marketplace.”
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