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The PCC Begins Field Trials on Innovative Exhaled Breath Anti-Doping Technology

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The Partnership for Clean Competition (PCC), the global leader in sports anti-doping research and development, is conducting field trials of exhaled breath testing technology for in-competition sample collection. The trials began in late September 2018 in conjunction with PCC Founding Members Major League Baseball (MLB) and the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), PCC-Contributor Comprehensive Drug Testing, Inc. (CDT), The Sports Medicine and Research Testing Laboratory (SMRTL), and SensAbues AB. Approximately 500 athletes will be tested.

The trials follow extensive research by Dr. Mario Thevis and his team at the Institute of Biochemistry, German Sport University Cologne which confirmed the novel technology’s ability to detect substances in several classes of the WADA Prohibited List. The PCC then facilitated significant prototype development to optimize the technology for use in an anti-doping setting. The field trials will compare the benefits of breath testing to those of oral fluid and urine collections and examine athlete ease of use and acceptance of the devices.

PCC-supported research into breath technology began in 2016 to determine if Sensabues Exhaled Breath technology, currently in use by Swedish law enforcement to detect drugs of abuse, could be applied in an anti-doping setting. The investment, which to date totals over $340,000 USD, was designed to offer professional and Olympic sports an inexpensive and efficient option to complement current in-competition testing methods.

“The PCC protects clean athletes by developing tools that facilitate less invasive testing for athletes and reduce the cost burden for sports organizations, both of which improve anti-doping programs in significant ways. Our two main goals are to improve detection of prohibited substances and increase deterrence of their usage. Breath testing could do both,” says PCC Executive Director Michael Pearlmutter. “The breath project exemplifies the value of our Translational Research Fund: taking good ideas from concept to reality. The TRF gives us a dedicated mechanism to support the research that provides our stakeholders tangible products and services to improve their anti-doping programs.”

CDT has been a pioneer in all aspects of the athlete anti-doping movement for over 30 years, collaborating with professional sports clients to manage athlete drug testing programs.  According to CDT’s Director of Program Quality, Mary McGilvray, “CDT’s involvement with the PCC on this important study aligns perfectly with our commitment to use the best methods that science, medicine and technology have to offer in support of clean and fair sport. CDT, along with the PCC, wants to improve the drug testing experience for athletes while ensuring the quality of drug testing detection methods. Through this research, the PCC and its partners are striving towards that goal.”

About the Partnership for Clean Competition
The Partnership for Clean Competition is an innovative research collaborative founded in 2008 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity by the United States Olympic Committee, United States Anti-Doping Agency, Major League Baseball and the National Football League. Every day, the PCC acts to protect the integrity of sport and public health by engaging and supporting the world’s top scientists and innovators in high-quality anti-doping research and development. The PCC also facilitates adoption of these methods into the World Anti-Doping Agency-accredited laboratories. The PCC aspires to help generate the world’s most influential, effective and coveted methods and resources for detecting and deterring the use of performance enhancing substances by all athletes in all sports at all levels. Through this work, the PCC demonstrates the value of science, collaboration and innovation related to doping control in sport and ensures the benefits of sport participation. For more information, visit CleanCompetition.org.

Media Contact
To get involved or learn more about novel breath testing technology for sports anti-doping, please visit the PCC website, or email Stakeholder Engagement Manager Jenna Celmer at jcelmer@cleancompetition.org.

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