Prototype developed for male birth control pill
Researchers have developed a prototype for an oral male contraceptive, raising expectations that a birth control pill for men may enter clinical trial testing within a year, according to a new study.
Scientists tested a compound, called JQ1, in mice and found it was able to penetrate the blood-testis barrier and disrupt spermatogenesis – the process in which sperm develop and become mature. As a result, the mice showed a reduction in the number and quality of sperm produced and were rendered infertile.
More importantly, after discontinuing use of the compound, normal sperm production resumed – showing that the compound’s effects are reversible. JQ1 did not appear to have an impact on testosterone production, mating behavior or health of offspring conceived after use.
“An ideal contraceptive has 100 percent efficacy, complete reversibility and a lack of on or off-target side effects, meaning its extremely well-tolerated,” senior study author Dr. James Bradner, from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, told FoxNews.com.