December 14, 2016
USADA announced today that Nicholas (Nick) Mossberg, of Phoenix, Ariz., an athlete in the sport of track & field, has accepted a four-year sanction for a non-analytical anti-doping rule violation after admitting to his possession and use of prohibited substances.
Mossberg, 30, was approached by USADA in April of 2016 as part of USADA’s investigation regarding prohibited peptides used in sport and purchased over the internet. At the time, Mossberg was planning on competing in the upcoming U.S. Olympic Trials. When confronted with evidence of his violations, Mossberg agreed to cooperate with USADA’s investigation and not participate in any further competitions, including the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Mossberg was sanctioned for his use and possession of prohibited growth hormone (GH) releasing factors (GHRFs), including GH-Releasing Hormone (GHRH) analogs, GH Secretagogues (GHS), GH Releasing Peptides (GHRPs), and additional prohibited growth factors from August 2014 to April 2015. These substances are in the class of Peptide Hormones, Growth Factors, Related Substances and Mimetics and are prohibited at all times under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing, the United States Olympic Committee National Anti-Doping Policies, and the International Association of Athletics Federations Anti-Doping Rules, all of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List.
The use of prohibited peptides by athletes and consumers for performance or physique enhancement (including recovery from injury) purposes poses serious health risks, and these peptides are not approved by the FDA for human use or consumption. These products, often branded as for “research/laboratory use only,” have not received any human clinical safety or efficacy evaluation, and are not produced according to Current Good Manufacturing Practice (“CGMP”) regulations. As such, they may cause serious adverse health effects, including immune and toxicity reactions, infection, and even death.
Mr. Mossberg said, “I accept responsibility for my rule violation, which came about due to my use of prohibited peptides for a short period of time in order to attempt to speed my recovery from an injury. I would like to apologize to my fans, friends, and fellow competitors for my error in judgment, which I deeply regret and which is inconsistent both with my conduct over the vast majority of my career and with my strong personal belief in the importance of clean sport.”
Mossberg’s period of ineligibility began on April 25, 2016, the date he admitted to his anti-doping rule violations. In addition, Mossberg has been disqualified from all competitive results obtained on and subsequent to August 23, 2014, the approximate date he first attempted to obtain prohibited substances in violation of applicable rules, including forfeiture of any medals, points and prizes.
In an effort to aid athletes, as well as all support team members such as parents and coaches, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on its website on the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, USADA manages a drug reference hotline, Global Drug Reference Online (www.GlobalDRO.com), conducts educational sessions with National Governing Bodies and their athletes, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, periodic newsletters, and protocol and policy reference documentation.
USADA is responsible for the testing and results management process for athletes in the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement, and is equally dedicated to preserving the integrity of sport through research initiatives and educational programs.