Performance and image-enhancing drugs (PIEDs) are used by athletes and non-athletes to improve athletic performance as well as physical appearance. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibits the use of these substances, however, easy access to these chemicals for the general public, facilitated by online markets, enables misuse behaviour among non-athletes and has been deemed a concern to public health in peer-reviewed literature. Performance and image-enhancing drug prevalence is commonly estimated through surveys, seizure data and anti-doping testing. This is limited by voluntary and honest participation as well as small sample size and single point-in-time measurements which do not truly capture use and prevalence. The extent of PIED use among wider populations is not fully understood. This PhD aims to address the knowledge gap utilising wastewater-based epidemiology, thus including the general population and covering larger population sizes. This tool will aid in obtaining objective information which can be used by authorities to understand the scale of use among the general population.

Please note this is a PhD Student Confirmation seminar.

Katja completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry and Biotechnology at The University of Applied Sciences Niederrhein in Germany as well as a concurrent apprenticeship at LANXESS as a Chemical Laboratory Technician in 2016. She holds a Master of Research degree in Forensic Science from King’s College London, for which she undertook her 6-month research project at QAEHS on the analysis of anabolic steroids in wastewater. Katja is currently completing a PhD on the analysis of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited substances in wastewater which is funded by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA).


PACE Building, 20 Cornwall Street, Woolloongabba
Interaction Space (Room 4002)