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Melissa Gatto failed drug test before UFC 239

Melissa Gatto had two cancelled bouts for different reasons since signing with the UFC.
Marcio Valle

A failed drug test was the reason why Melissa Gatto was pulled from UFC 239 earlier this month, sources confirmed to MMA Fighting following a report by ESPN.

Gatto (6-0-2) was scheduled to face Julia Avila at UFC 239 in Las Vegas on July 6. Less than 20 days before the card, though, the Brazilian withdrew from the bout due to undisclosed reasons. It’s now known that she failed an out-of-competition drug test done by USADA.

NSAC executive director Bob Bennett told ESPN that Gatto is expected to have her commission hearing in August.

MMA Fighting reached out to Gatto and the fighter said that her failed test is the result of a tainted supplement. She is requesting that the B-sample be tested.

“Unfortunately, my debut in the world’s biggest promotion has been postponed again,” Gatto told MMA Fighting. “I can’t find words to describe how sad I am. Throughout my entire fight career I’ve been transparent and hard with myself. I was notified on my last USADA test that I had ingested a prohibited substance.

“I know I’ve never intentionally used any substance that is not allowed by USADA. I always ask them about any substance I have to use. We believe one of our supplements could have been contaminated. My team and I are working to make sure this situation is resolved as soon as possible so I can come back soon to do what I love.”

The undefeated Brazilian bantamweight signed with the UFC earlier this year and was booked to face Talita Bernardo at UFC 237 in May. However, she was pulled from the card by the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA) due to an infection.

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