The WADA have published their list of prohibited substances for 2018 ©WADA

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) have published the 2018 list of prohibited substances, with a number of minor changes being announced.

Approved by the WADA Executive Committee at their meeting in Paris last Sunday (September 24), the list designates what substances and methods are prohibited both in and out-of-competition.

Alcohol has been removed from the prohibited list, with the substance having previously been banned in four sports.

While air sports, automobile, archery and powerboating have been affected by the change, WADA state the four International Federations have been informed in order to give them time to amend their rules and put protocols in place.

WADA claims giving the Federations control of the process will enable them to be more flexible in applying rules and thresholds as they see fit.

National Anti-Doping Organisations will no longer be obliged to conduct tests for alcohol but are able to assist governing bodies when considered appropriate.

Cannabidiol has also been removed from the prohibited list, unless it contains THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana.

The substance bemitil has been added to the WADA monitoring list in and out-of-competition, while the opioid pain killer hydrocodone will be monitored in-competition.

Mitragynine and telmisartan were removed from the monitoring list due to the required information on prevalence was obtained, while caffeine, nicotine, tramadol, glucocorticoids, and beta-2-agonists continue to be assessed.

"WADA is pleased to publish the 2018 prohibited list," WADA President Sir Craig Reedie said.

"Updated annually, the list is released three months ahead of taking effect so that all stakeholders - in particular athletes and their entourage - have sufficient time to familiarise themselves with the document and its modifications.

"It is vital that all athletes and entourage take the necessary time to consult the list; and that, they contact their respective anti-doping organisations if they have any doubts as to the status of a substance or method."

Minor changes have been made to the prohibited list for 2018 ©WADA
Minor changes have been made to the prohibited list for 2018 ©WADA

WADA will hope to avoid problems seen last year when the adding of meldonium to the banned list produced a raft of failures before they conceded that "more research was required" to ascertain how long the substance should remain in the human body.

Meldonium, a heart medication, remains on the list for 2018.

"Annually, the prohibited list review involves a very extensive stakeholder consultation process over the course of nine months," said Olivier Niggli, WADA director general.

"In reviewing the list, experts examine such sources as: scientific and medical research; trends; and intelligence gathered from law enforcement and pharmaceutical companies in order to stay ahead of those that endeavour to cheat the system.”

WADA state the revision of the list began with an initial meeting in January, which began an extensive nine-month process.

The process included the WADA’s list expert group gathering information and circulating a draft amongst stakeholders, as well as taking submissions into consideration.

A review was then carried out by WADA’s Health, Medical and Research Committee, who then made a recommendation to the Executive Board.

The full 2018 Prohibited List can be read here.

A summary of major modifications and explanatory notes can be accessed here.