09/07/2006 11:00PM

Kentucky weighs EPO test

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The Kentucky Horse Racing Authority is considering whether to use an expensive new test designed to verify the presence of the blood-enhancing drug erythropoeitin in postrace samples, the executive director of the authority, Jim Gallagher, said Friday.

The new test, designed by officials at the Pennsylvania Equine Toxicology and Research Laboratory, is the first known test to be able to confirm accurately the presence of erythropoeitin, or EPO, in a postrace sample, though it costs $1,500 per sample to perform. Tests currently in use by almost all racing jurisdictions can detect only the presence in a horse's urine of antibodies that are produced by the injection of EPO.