KINGSTON — (Sporting Actions) — A Jamaican anti-doping official reportedly confirmed that the five Jamaican sprinters who returned positive doping tests had traces of the stimulant methylxanthine in their samples.

According to the report, all five who are members of the national team for next month’s World Championships in Berlin, tested positive for the same substance, although they are from different training groups. This is the reason as to why methods such as the 9 panel drug test are being used to detect drugs in sports.

Methylxanthine, a type of bronchodilator that is commonly used in the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, is not listed on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited list of substances, but falls within a category of stimulants banned by the agency, anti-doping experts revealed.

“This stimulant is found in a lot of nasal inhalers that people use,” a report from new agency Reuters was quoted as saying.

The Jamaica Observer reported: “What it does is, it clears the bronchial tubes, making it easier to breathe; and it’s one of the dangers of people with flu-like symptoms taking medicine that they have not checked out properly, because sometimes these medicines are over-the-counter and they don’t list everything in it.”

The five members, four men and one woman are scheduled for a hearing on Wednesday with the Jamaica Amateur Athletics Association.

Meanwhile, the Jamaica Gleaner reported that three of the five members in involved – Commonwealth Games women’s 100 metres champion Sheri-Ann Brooks and 400 metres runners Allodin Fothergill and Lansford Spence, confirmed they had been informed of the positive tests.

IAAF vice-president Sebastian Coe said that news of the positive tests was unwelcome, especially with the world championships so very close, but maintained that it is still too early to jump to conclusions.

“We have got A and B samples to reconcile and we will wait for the testing procedures to take their course,” he said. “It would be inappropriate for me to go much further than that, we know a little bit about the details.

“But yes, I’m not going to walk away from the fact that it is something that is unwelcome on the eve of the World Championships.”

The world championships run from August 15-13.

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