IMIM - Institut Hospital del Mar d'Investigacions Mèdiques

Catalonian Anti-Doping Laboratory

The Catalonian Antidoping Laboratory belongs to the Neurosciences Research Programme at the Fundació IMIM (Institut Mar d’Investigacions Mèdiques). Fundació IMIM is part of the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park (PRBB). PRBB is located in the city of Barcelona, 20 minutes away from the Barcelona Airport by motorway.


The Catalonian Antidoping Laboratory is one of the laboratories accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to conduct doping control analyses in athletes. The Laboratory received the first accreditation in 1985 by the International Olympic Committee. The laboratory is also accredited by the Association of Official Racing Chemists (AORC) since 1994, to conduct doping tests in animals.

In order to carry out its activities and comply with the WADA and AORC directives, the Laboratory is accredited in accordance to the quality standard ISO 17025 by the Spanish accreditation body, Entidad Nacional de Accreditación (ENAC nº 239/LE485) since 2000.

Laboratory services

The primary objective of the Barcelona Antidoping Laboratory is to offer high quality and reliable services for doping control in sports. The Laboratory analyses samples collected at competitions (in competition tests) or during training periods (out of competition tests) at request of national, foreign and international sports organizations.

The Laboratory has been the responsible for doping controls in important sport events including:

  • XI Pan American Games, La Havana (Cuba) 1991 (satellite laboratory in Havana)
  • XXV Olympic Games, Barcelona 1992 - IX Paralympic Games, Barcelona 1992
  • XII Pan American Games, Mar del Plata (Argentina) 1995 (satellite laboratory in Buenos Aires)
  • XIII Asian Games in Bangkok, 1998
  • 10th FINA World Championships, Barcelona 2003
  • 11th Pan Arab Games, Cairo (Egypt) 2007
  • 20th European Athletics Championships, Barcelona 2010
  • XVI Pan American Games, Guadalajara (Mexico) 2011 (satellite laboratory in Mexico DF)
  • 14th World Junior Championships in Athletics, Barcelona 2012
  • 11th FINA World Swimming Championships (25m), Istanbul (Turkey) 2012
  • 15th FINA World Championships, Barcelona 2013  

Training of other antidoping laboratories

The Catalonian Antidoping Laboratory has participated in the advice and training of other laboratories to obtain WADA accreditation:

  • National Doping Control Centre , Banghok, Thailand  
  • Laboratório Brasileiro de Controle de Dopagem, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil  
  • Turkish Doping Control Center, Ankara, Turkey  
  • Antidoping Laboratory Sports Medicine Institute, Havana, Cuba  
  • Laboratorio Nacional de Prevencion y Control del Dopaje-CONADE, Mexico DF, Mexico  
  • Antidoping Laboratory Qatar, Doha, Qatar
  • Egyptian Antidoping Laboratory, Cairo, Egypt.

Research activities

The Laboratory develops an important research activity to contribute to the progress of sport drug testing. Research work is focused in the develoment and improvement of analytical methodologies to detect the use of doping agents, and the investigation of new markers to improve the detection of prohibited susbtances and prohibited methods. The current main research lines are:

  • Metabolism of anabolic steroids (long-term metabolites)
  • Detection of the administration of endogenous steroids.
  • Studies on the factors affecting the steroid profile.
  • Discrimination of prohibited and allowed use of glucocorticoids.
  • Discrimination of prohibited and allowed use of β2-agonists
  • Detection of the misuse of blood transfusion in sports.
  • Detection of growth hormone releasing peptides.
  • Use of dried blood spots in doping control

The Laboratory is developing several research projects funded by national and international organizations.

The Laboratory has more than 200 scientific publications, and staff of the laboratory has been awarded for its scientific activity (Manfred Donike Award-Scientific Excellence in Dope Analysis in years 2003, 2004 and 2009; Spanish National Award in Research in Sports Medicine in 2010)

University training

Researchers of the laboratory are actively involved in several training programmes: Human Biology Degree, Pompeu Fabra University; Master in Laboratory of Analysis, Pompeu Fabra University; European Master on Quality in Analytical Laboratories, University of Barcelona; Master in Forensic Analysis, University of Basc Country.

Several Doctoral Thesis have been developed in the laboratory.

  • Contact

    Person responsible:
    Rosa Ventura

    93 316 04 50
    93 316 04 74

    93 316 04 99

    Doctor Aiguader, 88
    08003 Barcelona

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