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J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2008 Dec;48(4):530-4.

Evaluation of urinary steroid profile in highly trained cyclists.

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Department of Physical Education and Sport, Sport Sciences School, University of Extremadura, Cáceres, Spain.



A regular and intense physical exercise significantly modifies hormonal metabolism and there are many reports of a change in urine steroid levels accompanying the practice of sport. The aim of this study was to compare the urinary steroid profile between highly trained cyclists and untrained subjects.


Urine levels of testosterone (T), epitestosterone (Epit), androstenedione, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), androsterone (A), etiocholanolone (E), beta-estradiol (E2), estrone (E1) and the most abundant urine metabolites of cortisol and cortisone, tetrahydrocortisone (THE) and tetrahydrocortisol (THF) were determined by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in urine samples from a group of professional cyclists (n=15) submitted to maximum level training for several years and compared with urine samples from sedentary subjects (n=15). The relationships between T/Epit, A+E/ THE, A+E/ THF, DHEA/THE and DHEA/THF were also studied.


Cyclists showed lower urine levels of T, A, E and E2 and higher urine levels of androstenedione and E1 than sedentary individuals. A+E/THE and A+E/ THF ratios were higher in sedentary subjects than in cyclists.


We conclude that cyclists showed a urinary steroid profile different from sedentary individuals, probably due to an adaptation to regular and intense physical training .

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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