Chael Sonnen fails second drug test, tests positive for HGH and EPO

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Chael Sonnen tested positive for four banned substances earlier this month in a second random drug test administered by the Nevada Athletic Commission.

Sonnen, who recently announced his retirement from MMA, was asked to take a blood and urine test on June 5 in Portland, Ore., by the NAC because at the time he was scheduled to fight at UFC 175 on July 5 in Las Vegas. The commission learned earlier this week that Sonnen failed those tests due to the presence of human growth hormone (HGH), recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), which is typically used to boost red blood cells that carry oxygen to the muscles, increasing stamina and endurance, anastrozole, used to treat early stages of breast cancer, and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), the female fertility drug that is often used in an effort to restart testosterone production. Both Sonnen and the UFC were informed of the news earlier this week by the commission.

NAC chairman Francisco Aguilar confirmed the news with MMAFighting.com.

When contacted by MMAFighting.com on Saturday night, Sonnen provided the following statement:

"Yes, the Commission is aware of other prescribed medications I was taking and I will not challenge their allegations. I will cooperate with the Commission and look forward to having a dialogue about how fighters who transition off TRT can avoid violating any rules."

It was announced on June 10 that Sonnen had failed the first drug test administered by the NAC on May 24 due to the presence of banned substances anastrozole and clomiphene. The commission decided to subject both Sonnen and his opponent at the time Wanderlei Silva to random drug testing leading up to UFC 175 as part of their enhanced drug testing procedures, which has really ramped up this year. Following the news of his failed test, Sonnen was pulled from the event and subsequently announced his retirement from the sport effective immediately.

On June 17, the commission handed Sonnen a temporary suspension with the promise of a full verdict to come in the near future. However, that was before they were informed of the second drug test failure. Sonnen admitted to taking the substances, as well as HCG, stating he needed them to complete his transition off testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).

According to Aguilar, Sonnen's case has now been amended to include the second test failure, and he will be on the next NAC meeting agenda, which is scheduled for July 23 in Las Vegas.

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