The male contraceptive researchers who have been trying to design an effective male contraceptive pill for years could be making the right moves as an American team from the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy has announced progress in the chemical formulation of a contraceptive drug.
Even though this hormonal contraceptive pill for men may not be launched into the market anytime soon, American researchers have presented promising recent findings at the 251st National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society.
The effective use of the Male birth control drugs is ensured by bringing an excess of testosterone or another hormone (progesterone) to the body, tricking the pituitary gland into suppressing the secretion of hormones (FSH and LH) and finally stopping the production of sperm.
University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy scientists have focused on developing an effective soluble compound that doesn’t take time to take effect and has no negative effect on the libido.
The male contraceptive must also be safe to take over a long period and still reserve the fertility of the user in case they want to have children in the future.
The researchers based their research on formulations that already exist at test stage. Even though the pharmaceutical industry has managed to coin up some experimental male contraceptives, the numerous side effects they presented killed the future of such drugs in the market.
One of the drugs as revealed by researchers effectively inhibits fertility in males but the problem was that it wasn’t soluble enough to be taken orally. This simply means it had to be injected which was not convenient. “No one wants to inject themselves with a needle once a day or once a week for most of their lives,” said Jillian Kyzer, one of the researchers on the team.
A second experimental male contraceptive compound proved suitable to be taken orally, but isn’t very selective in terms of cellular targets in the body and could lead to dangerous side effects.
From the results of previous experiments, scientists are using the collated data to build and improve their understanding of how minor changes to the chemical structure of these test compounds can bring about cellular interactions in the body.
At first, the changes and adjustments allowed them to obtain more soluble compounds though they were not very effective. Then subsequent modifications improved the stability of the compounds in such a way that they could last longer in the body.
However, these two modifications are yet to deliver the desired results.