Tags: male | conttraceptive | gene

Closing in a Male Contraceptive?

Monday, 28 May 2012 12:03 PM

A new gene discovery has opened the door to creating a new type of male contraceptive, scientists are reporting.
Research, led by the University of Edinburgh, has found that a gene – called Katnal1 – is critical to the growth and development of sperm.
The finding, reported in the journal Public Library of Science Genetics, could lead to new male contraceptives, if scientists can regulate the gene’s activities -- preventing sperm from maturing -- without changing men’s hormone levels.
Researchers also said the discovery could lead to new treatments for cases of male infertility, when malfunction of the gene hampers sperm development.
"If we can find a way to target this gene in the testes, we could potentially develop a non-hormonal contraceptive,” said lead researcher Dr. Lee Smith, with the Medical Research Council Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh. "The important thing is that the effects of such a drug would be reversible because Katnal1 only affects sperm cells in the later stages of development, so it would not hinder the early stages of sperm production and the overall ability to produce sperm.
Scientists noted the research involved male mice, but have implications for human males as well.

© HealthDay

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A new gene discovery has opened the door to creating a new type of male birth control method.
Monday, 28 May 2012 12:03 PM
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