Male Contraceptive Injection Set To Be Available In Six Months' Time
The world's first male contraceptive injection could be available in as soon as six months' time.
The groundbreaking birth control method, which is to be injected into a man's groin, releases a polymer to block sperm from leaving the testicles.
And scientists have found it can last for up to 13 years once administered.
The Indian Council of Medical Research, a government-funded biomedical research agency, have now finished clinical trials on the injection, according to the Hindustan Times.
Dr R.S. Sharma, senior scientist with ICMR, said: "The product is ready, with only regulatory approvals pending (from the government).
"The trials are over, including extended, Phase 3 clinical trials for which 303 candidates were recruited with a 97.3 per cent success rate and no reported side effects."
Sharma added: "The product can safely be called the world's first male contraceptive."
Having finished clinical trials, the injection is now pending regulatory approval.
When available, it will be given following a dose of local anaesthesia, and will essentially replaces the traditional vasectomy.
Doctors are hoping that, for many, it will be safer and less invasive than surgery, and will appeal to more men as an alternative to sterilisation.
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VG Somani, drug controller of India, said: "It's the first in the world from India so we have to be extra careful about approval. We are looking at all aspects, especially the good manufacturing practice (GMP) certification that won't raise any questions about its quality
"I'd say it will still take about six to seven months for all the approvals to be granted before the product can be manufactured."
The injection comes as the US have been working on a similar product for years, named Vasalgel - however, they have not yet succeeded in bringing it to market.
Plus, a male birth control pill is also in the works, although it isn't expected to be available for at least 10 years.
The contraceptive pill, which is called 11-beta-MNTDC, is a modified testosterone that combines the actions of a male hormone and a progesterone.
Like the female contraceptive pill, 11-beta-MNTDC is taken once a day to reduce the chance of conceiving.
The pill has been tested both humans and mice, and when complete will "decrease sperm production while preserving libido," much like the injection.
While the onus is usually on the female partner to take contraceptive measures simply because of the lack of male options other than condoms, according to a survey by YouGov, a third of men would be willing to take a male pill.
We're glad to see science is finally catching up.
Featured Image Credit: Flickr