Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Scientific study suggests an association between physical doping and brain doping

13.01.2014
Survey among triathletes finds correlation between consumption of drugs enhancing physical and mental performance

Physical doping and brain doping apparently often go hand in hand. A study from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and Eberhard Karls University in Tubingen revealed that people who engage in physical doping often also take drugs for brain doping.

The study was the first of its kind to survey simultaneously the two categories of doping and brain doping. Around 3,000 hobby triathletes were anonymously surveyed using a questionnaire at sporting events in Frankfurt, Regensburg, and Wiesbaden.

"The results correlated with earlier findings about doping in leisure and popular sports and brain doping in society as a whole. The findings also illustrated for the first time that physical doping and brain doping often go together, at least for recreational triathletes," said Mainz University Professor of Sports Medicine Dr. Dr. Perikles Simon.

The study was carried out using the randomized response technique (RRT), which allows for better estimates of unknown cases in response to sensitive questions. It suggested that 13.0 percent of the athletes surveyed had used illegal and banned substances in the twelve months prior to the survey; 15.1 percent were believed to have engaged in brain doping.

When talking about doping substances, a distinction is made between illicit drugs such as cocaine or heroin and banned substances for physical performance enhancement such as anabolic steroids, EPO, or growth hormones. Brain doping is the use of illegal substances and pharmaceuticals such as illegal amphetamines, modafinil or Ritalin to improve mental performance.

The findings indicate that the estimated proportion of men who dope (13.7 percent) is higher than the proportion of women (8.0 percent). The prevalence of doping also seemed to be higher at the European Championships in Frankfurt than at the other triathlons in Regensburg and Wiesbaden. The competitions involved participants taking part in either a classic Ironman with a 4 kilometer swim, 180 kilometer cycle ride, and 42 kilometer marathon or tackling half of the actual Ironman distance.

In their survey carried out during the 2011 season, the scientists interviewed a total of 2,997 triathlon participants. 2,987 questionnaires (99.7 percent) were returned. The study also examined whether there was a correlation between the use of legal and freely available substances for improving physical and mental performance and the use of illegal and banned substances. This would appear to be the case, as athletes who use legal substances to improve their performance also tend to use illegal substances as well.

Finally, another important finding of the study was the sign of a correlation between physical doping and brain doping, which can be found with both legal and illicit substances. The use of legal substances to enhance physical performance is thus relatively often associated with the consumption of substances to improve mental performance, just as there is a correlation between the use of illicit substances for both doping and brain doping. "This indicates that athletes do not actually take the substances to achieve a specific goal, but may show a certain propensity towards performance enhancing substances," explained Simon. The findings are important to better understand why people take such substances and to be able to provide targeted prevention.

Scientists from the Sports Medicine, Prevention, and Rehabilitation division at the Institute of Sports Science and the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the University Medical Center of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz and from the Department of General Psychology and the Department of Sports Medicine at Eberhard Karls University in Tubingen took part in the study entitled "Associations between physical and cognitive doping – a cross-sectional study in 2.997 triathletes". The study was also carried out in cooperation with the IRONMAN headquarters in Hanau, Germany.

Publication:
Pavel Dietz et al.
Associations between physical and cognitive doping – a cross-sectional study in 2.997 triathletes
PLOS ONE, 13. November 2013
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0078702
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0078702
Further Information:
Professor Dr. Dr. Perikles Simon
Sports Medicine division
Institute of Sports Science
Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
D 55099 Mainz, GERMANY
phone +49 6131 39-23586
fax +49 6131 39-23598
e-mail: simonpe@uni-mainz.de

Petra Giegerich | idw
Further information:
http://www.uni-mainz.de

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Improving memory with magnets
28.03.2017 | McGill University

nachricht Graphene-based neural probes probe brain activity in high resolution
28.03.2017 | Graphene Flagship

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Challenging European Research Project to Develop New Tiny Microscopes

The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.

To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Transport of molecular motors into cilia

28.03.2017 | Life Sciences

A novel hybrid UAV that may change the way people operate drones

28.03.2017 | Information Technology

NASA spacecraft investigate clues in radiation belts

28.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>