In a joint and ongoing mission to preserve the integrity of competition and support clean athletes, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) and Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) collaborated with. Boston Athletic Association (BAA) to run a robust testing program and try an innovative method of sample collection at the 2023 Boston Marathon.
““We’re honored to be working with the AIU and BAA to champion clean sport once again at the Boston Marathon,” said USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart. “It is equally important that we and all anti-doping organizations continually innovate on behalf of athletes as we strive to ensure a level playing field in major competitions around the country and around the world. By partnering with this event, we were able to run a trial that could help create a method of bloodletting that is both effective and athlete-friendly.”
To ensure that athletes competing in the Boston Marathon are held accountable for promoting clean sport, USADA has implemented a comprehensive and strategic pre-competition and in-competition testing plan that is consistent with: International Standard for Testing and InvestigationIt results in more than 90 samples being collected by USADA sample collection personnel. AIU and World Athletics will act as the results management authority for all healthy competitors, while USADA will manage the wheelchair divisions.
Looking ahead, USADA and AIU also advocated for an innovative and athlete-friendly method of bloodletting. Tasso+ deviceA revolutionary blood scalpel that collects all (liquid) capillary blood from the upper arm and can be analyzed for parameters in the Athlete’s Biological Passport.
“Effective and efficient blood collection is crucial to the Athlete Biological Passport program, and technology must continually evolve to meet the challenges and demands of keeping the sport clean while considering best practices for athletes. The Tasso+ device is an evolutionary step that potentially supports these goals,” said AIU President Brett Clothier. “The AIU was delighted to partner with USADA and the BAA to try out this method of bloodletting, and we were excited by the enthusiastic response from the road running community at the Boston Marathon.”
The needle-free device collects approximately 500 microliters of blood, which is six times less than a standard blood draw. Trial participation was optional during pre-competition testing and was greatly welcomed by the athletes, resulting in an 80 percent volunteer participation rate and successful collection of the required samples in the targeted number.
“The Tasso+ device is an exciting step forward in blood sampling as we approach our ultimate goal of reducing conventional blood collection methods,” explains Dr. Laura Lewis. “Of course, before any changes are made, extensive research and trials are required to ensure the highest effectiveness and compliance with international standards. We are excited to partner with AIU in this innovation process.”
About USADA (US Anti-Doping Agency)
USADA runs independent anti-doping programs year-round for all Olympic, Paralympic, and UFC athletes. USADA is an independent, nonprofit, nonprofit whose sole mission is to stand with athletes to advocate for their right to clean sports, inspire real and healthy sport, and support the integrity of sport.
About AIU (Athletics Integrity Unit)
The Athletic Integrity Unit (AIU) is an independent body created by World Athletics that manages all honesty matters, both doping and non-doping, for the sport of athletics. AIU’s mandate includes anti-doping, tracking down individuals engaged in the manipulation of age or competitive results, investigating fraudulent behavior related to loyalty transfers, and detecting bribery and other abuses, including violations of betting rules. It is AIU’s role to do everything it can to banish deception from our sport and to support honest athletes around the world who, through dedication and hard work, dedicate their lives to achieving their sporting goals.
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Monday, April 24, 2023