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TUF China winner fails USADA drug test, won't be suspended by UFC

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Chinese UFC star Ning Guangyou tested positive, but is eventually found to be 'without fault or negligence'.

Anton Tabuena

Both the UFC and USADA have announced that TUF China winner Ning Guangyou has tested positive for clenbuterol ahead of his bout this August. However, the Chinese star won't be suspended or penalized as he was found "without fault or negligence" because the substance can be found in the meat products in his country.

"Guangyou, 34, tested positive for trace amounts of clenbuterol as the result of an out-of-competition urine sample he provided on May 19, 2016," the USADA statement read. "Clenbuterol is an Anabolic Agent prohibited at all times under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, which has adopted the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List. Consistent with numerous prior reported cases globally, the issue of illicit administration of clenbuterol to animals destined for food production can result in, under specific conditions, a positive sample from an athlete. WADA has issued specific warnings about this problem in China and Mexico. To USADA’s knowledge, due to strict regulatory and meat certification practices, a clenbuterol positive athlete sample has never been reported after consumption of meat produced in the U.S."

"USADA reviewed all of the evidence, including the athlete’s whereabouts, dietary habits, and the laboratory reports demonstrating very low parts per billion concentrations of the prohibited substance in the athlete’s urine sample, and concluded that the presence of clenbuterol in the athlete’s sample very likely resulted from clenbuterol contaminated meat consumed in China. As a result, Guangyou will not face a period of ineligibility for his positive test."

"While the risk of consuming clenbuterol-tainted meat and testing positive for an athlete is extremely small, consistent with past athlete advisories, USADA reminds athletes to use the utmost care if eating meat in known high risk countries, including Mexico and China. In line with WADA recommendations, USADA will continue to assess the presence of clenbuterol in an athlete’s sample on a case by case basis, taking into account all the evidence supporting the likelihood of such contamination."

Ning's test was taken on May 19, and according to the UFC, they were made aware about the situation on late July. Due to the investigation done by USADA, the UFC moved Ning's bout against Marlon Vera a week later.

"Given it was initially unclear as to the timing of the resolution of the investigation, UFC made the decision to move Guangyou’s scheduled bout against Marlon Vera on August 20, 2016 at UFC 202 to UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Condit in Vancouver, BC on August 27, 2016."

The TUF China winner is currently 2-1 in the UFC, and will look to get back on the winning track as he competes outside Asia for the first time.

Clenbuterol is normally used to treat asthma and other breathing problems, but is also viewed as a performance enhancing drug that is said to reduce fat deposits and increase muscle mass. It is also sometimes used to 'bulk up' livestock in some countries. Boxing legend Erik Morales tested positive for the same substance back in 2012.