Sports Medicine and Anti-Aging Medical Group
1807 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 205
Santa Monica, CA 90403
Cell Phone: 310-435-8036
August 3, 2000
Letters to the Editor
The Los Angeles Times
201 West 1st Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
RE: Alan Abrahamson and David Wharton, "Test for Performance Drug Wins Olympic Panel's Nod," pp. A1, A9, The Los Angeles Times (August 2, 2000).
In 1999, the Growth Hormone Research Society presented to the International Olympic Committee's Medica l Panel the necessary information to test for human Growth Hormone (GH) abuse in sports. The GH Abuse in Sports Research Project, called "GH-2000," was funded by the European Union and the IOC. Some of the data was made public in the March 2000 issue of the Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism (S. Longobardi, et al.). It was incorrect to say in the "Olymic: Testing for Performance Drugs" article by Abrahamson and Wharton that "the IOC still lacks the capability to check for powerful substances such as human growth hormone." The IOC has the necessary data and the methods to test for GH abuse. I have been a team physician during five Olympic Games and believe that "if GH testing was implemented in Sydney then the GAMES could be ruined." Too many athletes would test "positive," and the IOC would only suffer further embarrassment. Testing for Olympic GH abuse is an issue of IOC politics and not of technical inability, as the IOC would prefer to have the public believe.
Very truly yours,
Karlis Ullis, M.D., Member of the
Growth Hormone Research Society