Commissioners and Controversy
1889 A French physiologist Charles Brown-Sequard markets a 'rejuvinating elixir', which is a liquid extract made from the testicles of guinea pigs and dogs. This is the first known product containing testosterone.
1935 Testosterone, is first synthesized by Butenandt and Ruzicka: who earn a Nobel Prize in chemistry for the accomplishment.
World War II It is believed that German soldiers are given testosterone to increase their performance on the battlefield.
1952 The Russian Olympic team performs extremely well at its first games in Helsinki. Accusations are made of steroid use, especially by the Soviet wrestling team.
1953 The first anabolic steroid, '19-nortestosterone', is synthesized: it has three to five times the muscle building effects of natural testosterone.
1954 At the world weightlifting championships in Vienna, a Soviet Union coach informs U.S. coach Dr. John Ziegler, that the Soviet team was using testosterone. On returning home, Dr. Ziegler began using testosterone with his weightlifters.
1958 Dr. Zeigler develops Dianabol and introduces it to US Olympic Weight Lifting Team.
1963 Roy Alvin serves breakfast with Dianabol to San Diego Chargers line men.
1963 -1968 The use of steroids spreads as many Olympic Track and Field Athletes prepare for 1968.
1975 The use of steroids in the Olympics banned by the International Olympic Committee.
1981 The “Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act” is passed: steroids must now be prescribed by physician, for medical use only.
1980s The black-market production and sale of steroids thrives.
1984 The first reported case of a bodybuilder contracting aids after sharing a needle for steroid use.
1988 Congress amends the “Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act” (a.k.a. Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988): setting criminal penalties for non-authorized distribution (black-market trafficking) of steroids.
1988 Ben Johnson, the Canadian sprinter who won the 100-meter race in the Summer Olympics, has his gold medal taken away when the steroid "stanozolol" was found in his urine.
1990 The “Anabolic Steroid Control Act” is passed: unauthorized distribution, possession and use of Anabolic Steroids without a prescription, is a Federal Offense in the United States punishable by up to one year in prison and/or up to $1,000 fine. Anabolic steroids become a Schedule III Controlled Substance.
1991 Fay Vincent attempts to ban Steve Howe from Major League Baseball for failing his seventh drug test. The Player’s Union appeals and overturns the Commissioner's decision.
1991 Fay Vincent resigns due to pressure from baseball owners and the Player's Union, which resulted from his tough stance on drug/steroid abuse.
1990s There are whispers of steroid use in professional sports.
2004 The “Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 2004” is passed: the definition of an Anabolic Steroid is expanded to include some precursors. The penalty is doubled for manufacturing, distributing or possessing with intent to distribute an anabolic steroid within 1,000 feet of a sports facility.
March 2005 There are Congressional hearings on steroids. Major League players, including Rafael Palmiero, deny use of steroids. Sammy Sosa refuses to speak English.
August 2005 Rafael Palmiero is suspended for 10 days after he fails a drug test where steroids were detected.
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