The US have apparently come up with a new way to detect performance enhancing drugs in athletes. The results are promising for maintaining/improving the honesty of competitive sports such as athletics, Football and Crossfit. The new screen is inexpensive, works with existing equipment and can detect stimulants and steroids in minute concentrations.
The beauty of this screening method is that it drastically increases the window of time that performance enhancing drugs can be detected. The research has been proposed to the American Chemical Society (ACS) who are an American governing body and authoritative source.
Current tests use a technique called mass spectrometry which involves passing urine through beams of electrons that turns the atoms into charged particles which are then ran through a machine that weighs the particles. The weights are then compared to known weights of performance enhancing drugs meaning positive doping tests can be flagged. Now the researchers believe they have developed a method that builds on the existing technique to detect these even smaller metabolites. This is done via a process known as Paired Ion Electrospray Ionisation (PIESI) which enables the detection of even smaller molecules, resulting in more accurate readings.
BBC News, Science and Environment, (2014). New Sports Doping Test 1,000 Times More Sensitive. Retrieved 20th March, 2014, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-26636371