While athletes have been forced to train in isolation over the past two months, the U. S. Anti-Doping Agency has taken advantage of the sports shutdown to test a pilot program in which athletes are drug tested at their homes using a relatively painless blood collection device built by Tasso, a Seattle-based startup. Rather than USADA’s traditional blood collection that requires a qualified phlebotomist sticking a needle into an athlete’s arm, Tasso is a pocket-sized device that a user can attach to a shoulder. Once attached, the user pushes a button and four dried blood samples—each less than a drop from an eyedropper—are collected from the capillaries in the skin.
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