GABA and Hydroxy-GABA–Carolina Gold–to be added to FEI Prohibited List

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LAUSANNE, Switzerland, May 7–The International Equestrian Federation has warned national federations against the use of Gamma amino butyric acid (GABA) and Hydroxy-gamma butyric acid (Hydroxy-GABA)–sold in the U.S. under the trade name “Carolina Gold”–o advice from the FEI List Group. The warning has been issued outside the List Group’s usual annual review process.
National Federations were advised in an email alert from FEI Veterinary Director Graeme Cooke that any request to an FEI Official/Veterinary Delegate to administer a substance containing GABA or Hydroxy-GABA at an FEI Event will not be permitted effective April 27, 2012.
GABA and Hydroxy-GABA will be added to the FEI Equine Prohibited Substances List as a Banned Substance and, following the 90-day implementation period as provided for in the Equine Anti-Doping and Controlled Medication (EADCMR) rules, will be subject to sanctions.
The two substances were brought to the attention of the FEI List Group primarily by the U.S. Equestrian Federation. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter and the USEF has banned its use following documented adverse reactions in horses. GABA and Hydroxy-GABA are ingredients in a commercial product sold in the USA under the trade name ‘Carolina Gold’.
The 2012 Equine Prohibited Substances List can be accessed FEI Equine Prohibited Substances Database, which is free to download.