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The 2nd WADA Symposium On Gene Doping

are working vigorously alongside genetic scientists so that, as new therapeutic methods are being developed, anti-doping scientists are finding new ways to detect gene doping.

"Gene doping will in all likelihood soon be with us, and I would not be surprised if the first tentative steps had already been taken," said American professor Theodore Friedman, one of the world's leading gene researchers, chairman of WADA's Gene Doping Panel and the first speaker at the symposium.

Sportspeople are taking immense risks when they add new genetic material into their bodies. Already there have been at least two deaths during experiments conducted to treat the sick.

"Two people have, for example, developed leukaemia," continued Professor Friedman. "The seriously ill can take such a risk perhaps, but for young, healthy sportsmen and women, it is completely unacceptable."

One challenge that anti-doping experts are trying to tackle is the fact that gene therapy methods, once available, will be relatively simple to use. All that may be needed is a standard laboratory.

The genes attractive to sport are well defined: those that stimulate tissue growth and boost strength, and those that increase stamina by stimulating the production of red blood cells.

On 4-5 December 2005, Stockholm is hosting the 2nd WADA SYMPOSIUM ON GENE DOPING. Participants include some fifty leading research scientist in the field of gene technology and gene therapy from around the world. The symposium is being organized by the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) in association with the Swedish Sports Confederation and Karolinska Institutet, and is a follow-up to the first WADA gene doping symposium held in New York's Banbury Centre in March 2002.

The symposium is not open to the media. Instead, the press is being invited to two special press conferences.

Saturday 3 December, 7.00 p.m. at the Clarion Hotel.
The first press confere
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Contact: Sabina Bossi
sabina.bossi@ki.se
46-852-483-895
Karolinska Institutet
3-Nov-2005


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