While we all know the idea of a make contraceptive is a good one, getting something that works well and is still simple enough isn’t necessarily easy. Creating something like this is harder than you might think and that’s why options for men when it comes to this kind of thing are essentially getting a vasectomy or wraping-up with a condom.
That having been said, research as of late has proven to be quite productive in animals and could prove to work well in humans someday as well. While more experimenting will need to be done, this is a step towards something huge if you really think about it. A paper that was published back in February of this year goes over a potential contraceptive for males that would essentially be reversible and quite useful.
So far it has only been tried on non-human primates and mice but in time it may end up getting some kind of clinical trial if things continue to go well. This study was published under the title ‘Triptonide is a reversible non-hormonal male contraceptive agent in mice and non-human primates.’ It is present in the journal Nature Communications and is well worth looking over.
The abstract of this study goes as follows:
There are no non-hormonal male contraceptives currently on the market despite decades of efforts toward the development of “male pills”. Here, we report that triptonide, a natural compound purified from the Chinese herb Tripterygium Wilfordii Hook F displays reversible male contraceptive effects in both mice and monkeys. Single daily oral doses of triptonide induces deformed sperm with minimal or no forward motility (close to 100% penetrance) and consequently male infertility in 3–4 and 5–6 weeks in mice and cynomolgus monkeys, respectively. Male fertility is regained in ~4–6 weeks after cessation of triptonide intake in both species. Either short- or long-term triptonide treatment causes no discernable systematic toxic side effects based on histological examination of vital organs in mice and hematological and serum biochemical analyses in monkeys. Triptonide appears to target junction plakoglobin and disrupts its interactions with SPEM1 during spermiogenesis. Our data further prove that targeting late spermiogenesis represents an effective strategy for developing non-hormonal male contraceptives.
Triptonide is something that a lot of researchers have thought would be useful in male contraceptives but so far no one has been able to pin down a proper way to use it. It works because it reduces sperm count, mobility, and so forth. While it does this when the test subject is on the medication when they come off of it according to this research it only takes a few weeks for things to go back to normal. That in itself is where the concept that this form of male contraceptive could essentially work for men and still be reversible.
What do you think about this? Would you use something like this if it moved forth and was eventually available to the masses? I think I would give it a try.