Researchers in Australia believe they may be on the verge of developing a viable male contraceptive that does not adversely affect the long-term health of sperm or an individual’s sex drive.
According to a study published in the U.S. journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, by genetically modifying mice researchers at Melbourne’s Monash University succeeded in blocking two proteins “that control the transport of sperm during ejaculation,” resulting in temporary male infertility. Researchers are now looking to duplicate the genetic process chemically in and develop a safe and reversible contraceptive pill for men in the next 10 years.
“The next step is to look at developing an oral male contraceptive drug, which is effective, safe and readily reversible,” said researcher Sabatino Ventura, reported AFP.
Earlier attempts at developing male contraceptives involved drugs that either disabled sperm or relied on hormone therapy, which were criticized for the adverse health affects the treatment could cause.