James Bradner and his colleagues at Harvard's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute are working to create a molecule that can lead to the world’s first male birth control pill.
Bradner and his team accidentally stumbled upon the possible contraceptive when he was developing an inhibitor molecule that could make cancer cells forget they were cancer. It would lead to new treatments for blood and lung cancer. While in the process of developing the molecule, Bradner found that the molecule known as JQ1 could also inhibit a protein found in the testes that is essential to fertility.
"In mating studies, JQ1 accomplishes a complete and reversible contraceptive effect in males without adversely affecting testosterone levels or mating behaviors and without prompting obvious [birth defects]in offspring," Bradner and Martin Matzuk, of the Baylor College of Medicine wrote in their study.
JQ1is a small molecule that can easily move through blood stream into the testes. Once there, it binds to the protein BRDT, an important component of sperm production.
"These cells effectively forget how to make mature sperm," he said. "The result is a profound decrease in sperm count and impaired motility, leading to a complete contraceptive effect. It's really stunning."
Bradner said that once JQ1 is developed it can be administered through a pill, injection, or applied topically.
"As early as next year, we may have a sense of how well this works in humans," he said. "What was initially a side project in our laboratory has become a major focus of our research…we're still aggressively advancing a derivative of it as a cancer drug."
In the live mouse studies, the molecule effectively caused the mouse to be infertile. After the mouse was taken off the molecule for several weeks, he became fertile again with only one side effect.
"The only significant side effect we've seen has been mild weight loss," Bradner said. "For sure, some people would not be too upset with this."
Although birth control pills for women have been successfully administered for years, there has been no effective irreversible method proven to work for men. Previous attempts to develop a male birth control pill have resulted in adverse side effects. William Bremner of the University of Washington believes it’s easier to stop a woman’s ovulation process in comparison to keeping a man from developing over millions of sperm.
"The difficulty of fully suppressing these millions of spermatozoa produced daily compared to the relative ease of preventing the production of one ovum per month in the female," Bremner wrote in an article accompanying the new research.
Bradner and his team said that they will continue their molecule trials in dog studies until they can progress in making it available for humans. They hope to include the molecule in drugs that can be taken daily, weekly or monthly.
"We've yet to consider the ideal properties of this medication," Bradner said. "But we could very likely respond to the demands of men interested in this type of therapy."
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (6/18-6/24)
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Me & the homie @jaleelwhite #RujohnFoundation Happy to be in Jamaica! Good times
1 of 25
2 of 25
3 of 25
4 of 25
5. Good Morning. Early day in Detroit! Making press rounds for @thebossnetwork's Ladies That Lead Tour. Thank you @traycemadre and @colourbynumbr for my glam.
5 of 25
6. POWER the best show on TV @djenvy, Queens we so big out here. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO
6 of 25
7. They said u lost a step, wasn't explosive as once was, the best days was in the real view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don't have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won't work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won't work, love your teammates to much, there's no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc.... But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir
7 of 25
8. Oooooh weeee this man right here is responsible for at least three of our four babies!! #JOE ❤❤❤🎤 #rnb #king #voicelikebutter #ForPeetesSake
8 of 25
9. Hanging with my @abcnetwork family! @abcunclebuck tonite y'all check us out ! @anthonyanderson @traceeellisross
9 of 25
10. My broski ( @sayeedshahidi ) and I are on Top 5 Live on @go90 at 5 (which is super duper close)! Make sure to tune in :) #UncleBuck #Blackish
10 of 25
11. Lights out💤 #GoodNight
11 of 25
12. Late nights mornings
12 of 25
13. Ran into the lovely talented @siedahgarrett on this brutiful favvuz deh!
13 of 25
14. #halal #love #thedargans #kattwilliamsSHOW #mashallah when that Jennah piece HIT!! @sweetjennahcollection glasses by @baddieglamaccessories LIZ 😍 @dynamiteko top @dazzledmv and jeans @thevision414 and shoes: @louboutinworld
14 of 25
15. Big Hair and Optical Illusions #OceanDrive #MiamiLiving #coverparty
15 of 25
16. MAMA and THE SAVAGES ... ⚓️ #supportyourlocalgirlgang
16 of 25
17. From the bottom of my ❤️, thank you new followers & old! & hello fellow night owls! #grateful #racheltrue #naturalhair #curlyhair #curlygirl #healthyhair
17 of 25
18. I feel so grateful because I met these amazing young minds, visiting from Houston TX, during their college tour stop today at #usc.These students are ALL extraordinary and embody academic excellence so I'm humbled to have shared a few moments with them to applaud and celebrate their bright futures ahead! Thank you @EmergeFellows for inviting me to speak and blessing me with your love and attention this afternoon!
18 of 25
19. Happy Fathers Day Pops. U taught me how to be a man. Lessons of love, hard work & gratefulness. Sorry the fishing didn't stick. LOL. I Love U!
19 of 25
20. Sky Zone and Ice Cream! Best Fathers Day Ever!! Photo credit @mariahcarey
20 of 25
21. Look what finally came in the mail 😎 #mtvmovieawards2016 💥+🌽! #straightouttacompton
21 of 25
22. Claudia Jordan: ....
22 of 25
23. 'Member that time I almost knocked a bajillion dollar camera off the car? Really? Yeah, me neither! #Greenleaf Episode 2 comin atcha!
23 of 25
24. Full of love. #birthday #Cabo
24 of 25
25. Oh hey! Look who just joined Snapchat
25 of 25