Detection of stanozolol in the urine of athletes at a pg level: The possibility of passive exposure

Biomed Rep. 2016 Dec;5(6):665-666. doi: 10.3892/br.2016.794. Epub 2016 Oct 27.


Stanozolol is a synthetic heterocyclic steroid with anabolic and androgenic properties, which has been abused by several high-profile professional athletes. Stanozolol is also used in veterinary medicine to increase appetite, cause weight gain and treat certain types of anemia. The detection of stanozolol metabolites in human urine for doping control purposes depends on the analytical method applied. The most commonly applied methods in the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)-accredited doping control laboratories are gas chromatography/high-resolution mass spectrometry (GC/HRMS) or gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS/MS). Recently, a new method has been published and validated that makes the detection of 3'-hydroxystanozolol glucuronide in urine possible in a concentration >50-fold less compared to the above-mentioned commonly used methods. It is common practice to administer breeding animals with steroid hormones in order to enhance their growth. Athletes who consume meat containing such hormone residues may be at risk of failing a sports drug test. A randomized study in the general population consuming meat should be conducted, monitoring the levels of 3'-OH-stanozolol glucoronide in human urine, in order to determine the threshold levels of passive exposure, if any, and therefore guarantee that any adverse analytical findings reported in the urine of athlete at a pg level correspond to stanozolol abuse for enhancing performance.

Keywords: 3′-OH-stanozolol glucuronide; animal breeding; doping; passive exposure; stanozolol.