Doping Detection Stays a Neck Ahead
News Aug 13, 2012
Horse racing is a massive world-wide industry and regular testing is essential to maintain its integrity.
As with human sport, the authorities constantly need to develop methodologies to detect new compounds that drug cheats are using or may start to use. One such compound is peginesatide.
Peginesatide is the first representative of a new class of compounds that mimic the effects of erythropoietin; these include an increase in the number of red blood cells and of haemoglobin levels in the blood.
Both of these increase endurance and so-called erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) are banned in human and equine sports.
The approval of the use of peginesatide by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat anaemia in patients on dialysis increases its availability and the chance of its use in illegal performance enhancement.
A new mass spectrometry method for detecting peginesatide in humans has already been developed, and now the extension of this for the detection of peginesatide in horse serum is described in an article published in EJMS-European Journal of Mass Spectrometry (doi: 10.1255/ejms.1189) written by Ines Möller, Andreas Thomas, AnkeWingender, Marc Machnik, Wilhelm Schänzer and Mario Thevis from the German Sport University Cologne, Germany.
This is timely since the German Equestrian Federation has recently added peginesatide to its prohibited substance list.
The new method uses electrospray ionization (ESI) liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Samples are prepared using the serine endopeptidasesubtilisin to break down the compounds in the sample prior to LC-MS/MS analysis.
According to lead author Mario Thevis, “The method is precise, specific and linear over a wide concentration range. Further, being simple, fast, cost effective, easily transferable to other laboratories and in accordance with the criteria for ‘identification by chromatography and mass spectrometry’ outlined by the Association of Official Racing Chemists (AORC), the method is suitable for routine use in the horse sports drug testing arena.”
Arrow Poison Potential Male Birth ControlNews
Women have many options for oral contraceptives that are safe, effective and reversible, but despite decades of research, men have none. Now, scientists report a rat study that shows they finally have a good lead for a male birth control pill. It's based on ouabain, a plant extract that African warriors and hunters traditionally used as a heart-stopping poison on their arrows.READ MORE
Robust Multiplex Mass Spectrometric Assay for Screening Small-Molecule InhibitorsNews
A new original research article presents a fast, sensitive, and robust methodology for screening small molecule inhibitors against CD73/Ecto-5'-Nucleotidase, a promising target for developing anti-cancer drugs.READ MORE