By Matt Ford: Amir Khan, the former light-welterweight world champion, has been suspended from all sport for two years after testing positive for ostarine, a banned substance that mimics the effects of testosterone. The UK Anti-Doping agency (UKAD) announced the sanction on Tuesday, following an independent tribunal’s decision.
Khan, who retired in May after losing to Kell Brook by sixth-round stoppage, claimed that he did not intentionally take ostarine, which is also known as enobosarm, MK-2866, or GTx-024. He said he was concerned about the lack of drug testing before his fight against Brook and accepted his responsibility for breaking the anti-doping rules.
However, under the principle of “strict liability”, athletes are held accountable for any prohibited substances found in their samples, regardless of how they got there. The tribunal ruled that Khan’s violation was not deliberate or reckless, but still imposed a two-year ban from all sport, starting from April 6, 2022.
Khan has not commented publicly on his ban yet, but his fans and supporters have expressed their disappointment and shock at his downfall.
Ostarine is a type of drug called a selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM), which is designed to have similar effects to testosterone without the unwanted side effects of steroids. Ostarine can help increase muscle mass, strength, and endurance, as well as prevent muscle wasting and osteoporosis.
Ostarine is banned by WADA at all times, as it is considered an anabolic agent that can enhance performance and pose health risks. WADA has reported an increasing number of positive tests involving SARMs in recent years, especially among athletes in bodybuilding and combat sports.
Ostarine is not approved for human use or consumption in any country, and is only available through illegal sources.
According to the USADA website, ostarine has been found in some dietary supplements marketed for bodybuilding, but often under misleading names or without being declared on the label. Athletes who use these products may unknowingly ingest ostarine and risk failing a drug test.