London , December 24 : In a ground-breaking announcement, a group of scientists has announced that it will be putting a contraception gel it has developed into trials, starting this April.
Currently, the only forms of contraception available to men are condoms and vasectomies, though researchers have sought contraception options similar to those for women in recent years, reports the Daily Express.
The men in the trial will be given a pump bottle of the gel, from which half a teaspoon of gel will be rubbed onto men’s upper arms and shoulders every day for at least four months.
The active chemicals in the gel will include a form of progestin called Nesterone and a synthetic form of testosterone. Progestin prevents the testicles from producing testosterone, which the body needs to produce sperm cells.
The latest trial will follow successful experiments in 2012, which found that the gel reduced sperm concentration in almost 90 percent of men.
Stephanie Page, the principal researcher of the study, said, “I am very confident that if men put the gel on every day, and apply it correctly, it will be effective”.
As per the researchers, this study is about gender equality. Men would also like to regulate their own fertility and not be forced into fatherhood.
Application of the gel will cause a drop in sperm production for approximately 72 hours. During the first four months of the trial, the female partners will be asked to use a female contraceptive while the sperm levels of the men are monitored.
If the trial is successful, it could still be several years before the gel becomes available to the public, noted the researchers.