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Antonio Silva Pleads Innocence

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Sherdog talks to Silva manager Alex Davis:

"It’s a false positive. He got tested positive for something he didn’t take," said Davis from his home outside Rio de Janeiro. "I will not let my fighter sit back and be wronged like this. I just won’t."

Silva was notified of the positive test result Wednesday via a phone call from the CSAC, though Davis said rumors of his fighter’s results had been circulating during a prolonged testing period, which included independent tests of two separate samples conducted by Quest Diagnostics and the World Anti-Doping Agency-approved Laboratoire De Controle Du Dopage in Montreal.

"I did not use the steroid Boldenone, or any other steroid of prohibited substance," Silva wrote in a prepared statement distributed to Sherdog.com. "I don’t agree and never have agreed with the use of this kind of product in order to win, for this is cheating. I will go to the full extent of my power and the law to prove my innocence in this matter."

In June 2007, Silva (11-1) was denied licensure in California when an abnormal brain scan of the athlete showed signs of a tumor. Silva -- who suffers from the chronic disease acromegaly, which causes enlargement of the extremities and face due to an overactive pituitary gland -- underwent surgery two months later to remove the tumor and has fought three times since.

Davis said Silva has taken legal nutritional supplements during his training, but that the use of steroids in light of his fighter’s medical condition could prove fatal.

"He can’t take stuff like that because he has acromegaly," said Davis. "All of his hormone levels are a problem regularly, so he wouldn’t be able to for risk of his life."

Boldenone is commonly utilized in veterinary practices, primarily for the treatment of horses. It is also prevalent in bodybuilding circles, where it is illegal. One of the more imposing figures in the division, Silva has cut weight in the past to make the 265-pound heavyweight limit.

Davis said himself and American Top Team, which has groomed Silva as a professional fighter since his arrival in the U.S. nearly two years ago, have already set the wheels in motion to hire a toxicologist and legal representation to shepherd Silva’s appeal.