A Senate committee gave its approval Thursday to a bill that would limit the sales of steroid (search) precursors such as androstenedione (search).

The Judiciary Committee sent the full Senate a bill that would ban over-the-counter sales of precursors, which act like steroids in the human body.

The House has approved a similar bill that would modify the definition of "anabolic steroid" to include tetrahydrogestrinone, androstenedione and specified related chemicals.

Congress has taken an increased interest in the issue this year after reports of steroid use among athletes, particularly professional baseball players. A federal grand jury in San Francisco has indicted four men on charges of illegally distributing steroids, including the personal trainer of Giants slugger Barry Bonds (search).