A Birth Control Pill for Men? Researchers Say It May Soon Be Reality
“We were intrigued,” said Dr. Debra Wolgemuth, professor of genetics and development and of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University Medical Center, in a press release. “One company’s toxin may be another person’s contraceptive.”
Wolgemoth and her team found that a dose as little as 1.0mg/kg of body weight over a 4-week period was enough to induce reversible male sterility.
The drug has an advantage over steroidal hormone-based methods, the researchers say, because steroidal methods are often plagued with side-effects, including variability in efficacy, increased risk of cardiovascular disease and diminished libido.
“We have seen no side effects, so far, and our mice have been mating quite happily,” said Dr. Wolgemuth.
An additional benefit of the compound is that it can be taken orally as a pill, according to researchers, which avoids the the injection process.
Further testing is needed to prove the compound is safe, effective and reversible even after years of use.
The research was published in the journal Endocrinology with funding from the National Institutes of Health.