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Independent Arbitrator Imposes Two-Year Sanction on Bruno Arruda da Silva for UFC Anti-Doping Policy Violation

UFC glove with USADA UFC logo overlaidUSADA announced today that an independent arbitrator has rendered a decision in the case of UFC® athlete Bruno Arruda da Silva, of Parana, Brazil, and determined that Arruda da Silva should receive a two-year period of ineligibility for his anti-doping policy violation. This decision comes after the facts of the case were presented and fully argued at an evidentiary hearing on May 27, 2020.

Arruda da Silva, 30, tested positive for boldenone and its metabolite, 5β-androst-1-en-17β-hydroxy-3-one, at a level inconsistent with boldenone meat contamination as the result of a urine sample collected out-of-competition on May 27, 2019. Confirmation of the positive test was achieved through additional analysis using the sensitive isotope ratio mass spectrometry (GC/C/IRMS) method, which reported laboratory results consistent with the exogenous origin of boldenone. Boldenone is a non-Specified Substance in the class of Anabolic Agents and is prohibited at all times under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy (ADP) and UFC Prohibited List.

Arruda da Silva did not declare the prior use of boldenone or any other prohibited substance on his onboarding declaration upon joining the UFC and argued that he did not know how the boldenone entered his system. During the hearing, Arruda da Silva did not produce any evidence regarding the source of his positive test, although he speculated about a number of possible explanations.

As a result of his failure to produce any evidence of source, including testing supplements that were all negative for boldenone, and USADA’s evidence that boldenone meat contamination was implausible in this circumstance, the arbitrator concluded that da Silva was ineligible for a reduction to the default two-year period of ineligibility.


Upon being added to the UFC Anti-Doping Program, athletes are required to complete a thorough onboarding process, which includes education and completion of an onboarding declaration form. Athletes must declare all substances and methods, including medications and supplements, they have used, attempted to use, or possessed in the previous 12 months. An athlete who declares a prohibited substance or method will not be deemed to have committed a violation but, depending on the substance or method, may be required to refrain from competition for a period of at least six months and provide at least two negative samples.

Arruda da Silva’s two-year period of ineligibility began on June 14, 2019, the date his provisional suspension was imposed.

This decision can be found here, along with all other UFC Anti-Doping Policy arbitral decisions.

USADA conducts the year-round, independent anti-doping program for all UFC athletes. USADA is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental agency whose sole mission is to preserve the integrity of competition, inspire true sport, and protect the rights of clean athletes. In an effort to aid UFC athletes, as well as their support team members, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on the UFC Anti-Doping Program website (https://UFC.USADA.org) regarding 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, the agency manages a drug reference hotline, Drug Reference Online (https://UFC.GlobalDRO.com), conducts educational sessions, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, and periodic athlete alerts. Many of the resources available to athletes are provided in multiple languages, including Russian, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Korean, and Japanese.

Along with education and testing, robust anti-doping programs enable investigations stemming from tips and whistleblowers. USADA makes available a number of ways to report the abuse of performance-enhancing drugs in sport in an effort to protect clean athletes and promote clean competition. Any tip can be reported using the USADA Play Clean Tip Center, by email at playclean@usada.org, by phone at 1 877-Play Clean (1-877-752-9253), or by mail.

For more information or media inquiries, email media@usada.org.

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