Posted by Matt Cahill on Jul 6th, 2010 and filed under Featured Articles, Research Updates, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry from your site
Contraception for woman has been available for decades, and comes in quite a few forms – the pill, the patch, and the coil to name a few. And while some moronic, foolish men who are of the belief that contraception “is her problem”, there has been discussion of a male contraceptive pill for some time now. While it is always sensible to use a condom to avoid contracting any STIs, these, or the more extreme vasectomy, have been the only realistic contraceptives for men. There is a jab contraceptive for men undergoing phase III clinical trials in India, called “RISUG”, but this does not appear to be side effect-free. Scientists in Israel have discovered a pill that may have this contraceptive effect also, seemingly without any side effect. While the pill will only last three months compared to the jab’s estimated ten years, this still seems like a decent trade off if the pill does not come with unwanted sides.
The way it works is also very different to the jab. While the jab aims to reduce sperm count almost entirely, the pill alters the sperm by removing a protein essential to conception. The sperm can still reach the egg, but once there it’s not getting in. So far this has only been shown in mice, but human trials are due to begin next year.
In other news, pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim have been working on a female sex pill. Until now, sexviagra pills have typically been only available for men and are of the PDE-5 inhibitor class. The drug, called Flibanserin and originally investigated as an anti-depressant, is a serotonin A1 receptor agonist, and 2A receptor antagonist. It is thought a lull in sexual desires by pre-menopausal women, called hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), is due to chemical imbalances in the brain that typically come with age. Flibanserin works to correct this imbalance, restoring sexual vigor.
Flibanserin was involved in phase III trials last year, which while promising, were still inconclusive leading the FDA to reject approval last month. The hopes of Boehringer Ingelheim are still high that further trials will lead to a change of heart by the FDA.
Male contraceptive pill and female sex drugs? Whatever next?