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Former teammate claims Lance Armstrong used drugs

by Derrick Johnson on May 20, 2011

Tyler Hamilton, a former teammate of Lance Armstrong's, says that he saw the athletic and multi-champion use performance enhancing drugs on several occasions, according to a new report from the Associated Press.

The drug in question is called EPO, or Erythropoietin. EPO is involved in wound-healing as well as preventing neuronal apoptosis, according to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It is a glycoprotein hormone produced by one's own body. However, the hormone can be taken from an outside source, as a performance-enhancing drug.

"I saw [EPO] in his refrigerator. …I saw him inject it more than one time, like we all did. Like I did, many, many times. …[Armstrong] took what we all took …the majority of the peloton [or group of bikers]. There was EPO …testosterone …a blood transfusion," said Hamilton in an interview with Scott Pelley, of "60 Minutes."

Lance Armstrong has won the Tour de France seven times and has never failed a drug test. Hamilton is saying that Armstrong took EPO in 1999, as well as in 2000 and 2001.

On Armstrong's part, the famous athlete's lawyer, Mark Fabiani, has responded by saying that Hamilton is not to be trusted.

"Tyler Hamilton is a confessed liar in search of a book deal—and he managed to dupe 60 Minutes. Most people, though, will see this for exactly what it is: More washed-up cyclists talking trash for cash," Fabiani told the Wall Street Journal.

However, this is not the first time that another cyclist has claimed that Armstrong used performance-enhancing drugs. In the past, Floyd Landis – who won the 2006 Tour de France – told officials that he and Armstrong both used drugs. Landis subsequently lost his 2006 title after testing positive for a drug test.

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