Russian biathlete Tatiana Moiseeva tested positive for the banned drug dexamethasone (dex), according to a recent report from news agency Allsport. The news was followed up by CNN, which mentioned little of the drug’s activity.
Dexamethasone is a fluorinated corticosteroid (11b,16a)-9-fluoro-11,17,21-trihydroxy-
16-methylpregna-1,4-diene-3,20-dione, to be precise. It acts as an antiinflammatory and an immunosuppressant and as such is used in rheumatoid arthritis, in surgery to prevent rejection of artificial components, and in oncology to ameliorate the effects of chemotherapy. It also has efficacy in altitude sickness. In sport, it’s antiinflammatory action, of course, allows athletes to train harder and work through injuries faster.
Moiseeva meanwhile, is holding out hope that her “B” sample will show negative and that the result reported on her “A” sample was a false positive.