It’s getting there.
by Caleb Reading
Via The Daily Mail:
Scientists have discovered a substance that can temporarily block the development of sperm without altering testosterone levels and without causing unwanted side effects.
They hope human trials of a new contraceptive for men based on their discovery could begin within a few years.
Adherin on its own is known to have toxic effects on the body, but the team overcame this problem by ensuring it would only attach to one cell in the body – the Sertoli cells.
The team tested it on vital organs such as the kidneys, liver, heart and brain, and found it had no harmful side effects.
Dr Cheng and his team hope their finding will lead to a male contraceptive – although say it is likely to be an implant rather than a pill as the tablet would be broken down in the digestive tract.
Dr Cheng said the approach taken by other researchers of using hormone-based contraceptives was not wrong. However he said it was important to give people a choice.
Earlier this year researchers working on a hormonal-based male contraceptive said an implant or injection could be available within five years.
Another study, published in the Lancet found that men given a hormonal-based contraceptive drug saw their sperm count return to normal just over three months after they stopped using it.