a thread for biochemistry geeks [split from Lance]


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Re: a thread for biochemistry geeks [split from Lance]

Postby 26mi235 » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:29 pm

I would guess that impure and widely mixed PEDs would lead to more problems than we would see in a single-drug, controlled trial. Given that we have had a huge, if not very documented, trial of PEDs for many years in many sports without a lot of clusters of drug-induced cancers, it seems unlikely that it makes any sense to attribute Armstrong's cancer to drug use, especially since there is not much identified information on his PED use prior to his development of cancer in 1996, and developing cancer by '96 from usage in the prior year or two is awfully quick.
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Re: a thread for biochemistry geeks [split from Lance]

Postby El Toro » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:12 pm

Blues point about EPO enhancing cancer may have some value because cells do better with a better oxygen supply. Duh! Do you really want to provide better oxygenation to fast proliferating cells? Treatments are moving in the opposite direction - http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/Feb ... 91.kr.html

HOWEVER, despite the seeming logic, gh's point remains valid. You would expect that cancer in EPO endurance athletes would be observable earlier and advance more quickly compared to a normal population but if there is no evidence of actual outcomes like this then the logic doesn't matter, irrespective of how seductive it might be.

Given that EPO has been used by likely tens of thousands of athletes over about 20 years there should have been some indication although you may not see much effect given that the age cohort of EPO users is not very cancer prone.
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Re: a thread for biochemistry geeks [split from Lance]

Postby Blues » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:48 pm

And even if it turns out that the incidence of certain cancers isn't greater in PED users than in non-PED user athletes, it's still very possible that certain PEDs, including IGF-1 and HGH (that can increase IGF-1 levels) can increase the growth and spread of certain cancer cells that may already be present. So although the incidence of cancer might not turn out to be greater in PED users, it's still possible that certain PED users might end up having a larger number of cancers that are more advanced and more difficult to treat or cure at the time of diagnosis, which is still something to be concerned about. I hope we'll see large scale, well controlled and comprehensive studies done in the not too distant future to answer our questions, but I won't hold my breath.
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