The female birth control pill, commonly referred to as ‘The Pill,’ is not 100 percent effective, and some women’s bodies don’t react well to the extra hormones. Now, finally, a new birth control option for men is in the works, which would allow partners to share the responsibility, and let guys be in control of whether or not there will be any surprises in the procreation department.
Prof. Haim Breitbart of Israel’s Bar-Ilan University authored a breakthrough paper in 2006 describing how sperm survives in the uterus. Now the biochemist is taking those findings and using them against sperm. He’s developed a number of novel compounds that he says have no adverse effects on male sex drive, but succeed in impairing the reproductive ability of the sperm. If all goes according to his plan, a new male birth control pill could be on the market within the next five years, he said.
So far, the new pill dubbed the Bright Pill (a play on Brietbart’s name) has been tested on animal models in a pre-clinical setting, and has been found to work wonderfully on mice. “What we found is that by treating the mice with our molecule we can get sterility for a long period of time; in the lower dose, about one month, and in the higher dose we found three months of sterility.
“Later on the male mouse can become fertile. It’s reversible,” he promises.
Provided in pill form, but also tested as an injection, the male birth control solution was administered in two treatments over three days: One day on, one day off, one day on. In the larger dose group, it took about a week until the effects manifested themselves, but most importantly, the treatment does not appear to in any way affect the sex drive or the sexual behavior of the mice who received it.
“The mice behaved nicely,” Breitbart reports, “they ate and had sex; they were laughing, and everything, so all I can say is that we couldn’t see any behavioral side-effects – all their sex behavior was retained, which is a very important consideration for human men. A man who takes this pill could also be sexually active later on and have children.”