9 Oct 2008

IOC to retest Beijing Games blood samples

7:23 am on 9 October 2008

The International Olympic Committee is to retest frozen blood samples taken from athletes during the Beijing Games in August for traces of a new generation of drug.

The decision follows a number of positive cases involving frozen samples of cyclists from the Tour de France in July.

The IOC said on Wednesday it will especially be looking for EPO CERA, a new performance-enhancing drug that the cyclists tested positive for.

Continuous Erythropoiesis Receptor Activator is a form of EPO that has a longer lasting effect in improving the blood's oxygen delivery system.

The IOC collected about 1,000 blood samples and about 4,000 urine samples during the Games in Beijing.

Once a urine test for the substance is available the urine samples will also be tested.