London 2012 anti-doping laboratory receives seal of approval

London, April 24: The London Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) Tuesday received accreditation for its Anti-Doping Laboratory.

The accreditation, granted by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), is the final seal of approval for the laboratory which is provided by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and operated by King’s College London.

The WADA accreditation process, which spanned for a two year period, was based on two international standards – ISO/IEC 17025, and the International Standard for Laboratories – which requires the laboratory to undergo a series of rigorous tests to establish its analysis credentials, Xinhua reported.

The process also involved several site visits from WADA’s Science Department and the ISO/IEC accrediting body prior to the granting of accreditation.

Assessments were focused on the facility, equipment, procedures and staffing during three formal inspections and dummy sample testing. Over 1,000 LOCOG staff will work within the Anti-Doping process and a team of more than 150 anti-doping scientists will carry out the testing at the laboratory.

Jonathan Harris, LOCOG Head of Anti-Doping said: “The WADA accreditation is a green light signal that the lab is ready. The successful partnership between LOCOG, GSK and King’s has enabled us to present to WADA a brilliant laboratory for King’s to operate at Games time.”

Jonathan Edwards, LOCOG Chair of Athletes Committee and Olympic Triple Jump gold medalist, said: “Ensuring athletes come to London with confidence in the LOCOG Anti-Doping program and the London 2012 laboratory is very important.”

WADA President John Fahey said: “Achieving WADA accreditation means that the London 2012 Anti-Doping Laboratory will operate to the highest standards of sample analysis during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“Doping athletes must know that there is a very good chance they will be tested this summer with everything scientifically possible – and with the assistance of growing intelligence – will be done to make sure that their efforts to cheat are detected by the experts at the Laboratory.”

IANS