We studied the tumor host response to excessive doses of an anabolic steroid (nandrolone propionate, mg 20 g intraperitoneally every second day for 11 days) with respect to body composition and tumor cell kinetics in MCG 101 sarcoma—bearing mice (C57BL/6J) with progressive cachexia. Although survival and food intake were not affected, a significant weight gain was observed that was essentially attributed to water retention. Net protein content was increased only to a minor extent (15%), of which only the liver accounted for a significant part of the body compartments. Hepatic protein accumulation was obviously caused by decreased protein degradation, since hepatic RNA content was unchanged. After anabolic steroid administration, reduced histochemical staining of succinate dehydrogenase was observed in skeletal muscles rich in oxidative type 1 fibers, but it was not different from that of tumor-bearing control animals, which was also confirmed by measurements of citrate synthase and cytochrome c oxidase activities in skeletal muscle and liver tissue. The anabolic steroid had no significant effect on tumor growth in terms of weight progression, energy state, polyamine synthesis rate, cell division rate, and cell cycle cytocompartments. We conclude that anabolic steroid supplementation is not therapeutically beneficial in counteracting progressive weight loss in experimental cancer.
Determination of whether the major metabolite of nandrolone in urine, 19-norandrosterone (19-NA), is exogenous or endogenous in origin is one of the most exciting challenges for antidoping laboratories. Gas chromatography–combustion–isotope ratio mass spectrometry (GC–C–IRMS) can be used to differentiate these two origins by carbon isotopic ratio analysis. A complete method for purification of 19-NA in urine has been established. Acetylated ketosteroids, and in particular 19-NA, are isolated from the urine matrix before analysis after hydrolysis and purification of urine by reversed-phase and normal solid-phase extraction. The limit of detection for 19-NA was about 60 ng with recoveries of 54–60%. Evidence of exogenous administration of 19-NA may be established from isotope ratio determination from the 13 C/ 12 C ratios of several synthetic 19-norsteroids compared to those obtained for endogenous steroids.
Heavy consumption of the essential amino acid lysine (as indicated in the treatment of cold sores) has allegedly shown false positives in some and was cited by American shotputter C. J. Hunter as the reason for his positive test, though in 2004 he admitted to a federal grand jury that he had injected nandrolone.  A possible cause of incorrect urine test results is the presence of metabolites from other AAS, though modern urinalysis can usually determine the exact AAS used by analyzing the ratio of the two remaining nandrolone metabolites. As a result of the numerous overturned verdicts, the testing procedure was reviewed by UK Sport . On October 5, 2007, three-time Olympic gold medalist for track and field Marion Jones admitted to use of the drug, and was sentenced to six months in jail for lying to a federal grand jury in 2000.