On Monday, the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) ruled unanimously in favor of granting Chael Sonnen a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) for testosterone for his upcoming bout with Anderson Silva at UFC 148.
Sonnen’s prescribed use of testosterone has been an ongoing saga since he failed his post-fight drug test at UFC 117 for elevated levels of testosterone. The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) initially suspended Sonnen for one year, but then reduced his suspension to six months. During Sonnen’s hearings with the CSAC, NSAC execeutive director Keith Kizer said Sonnen lied about receiving approval to use prescribed testosterone against Nate Marquardt at UFC 109 in Nevada. Sonnen claims that his former manager Matt Lindland had spoken with Kizer and gotten the approval. However, Kizer denies these claims.
Sonnen’s suspension in California expired in June 2011 and he has since competed in Texas and Illinois. Sonnen applied for TUEs in both states offering full disclosure on the pre-fight paperwork and did not receive any objection.
In granting the TUE, Kizer laid out a set of guidelines that Sonnen must follow. He has to follow a prescribed set of directions from Kizer and submit to an additional post-fight blood test the morning after the fight at his own expense. He also has to submit his recent TUE applications in Texas and Illinois to the NSAC for review. Sonnen’s TUE grant does not allow him to test outside the allowable levels of testosterone in his system during any pre-fight or post-fight drug tests. He also has to remain below the NSAC’s allowed 6-to-1 testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio. However, the TUE does allow Sonnen to have synthetic testosterone in his system during those tests.