Deadly plant extract key to future of male birth control
(KAIT/NBC) - University of Minnesota scientists may have developed a birth control pill for men.
Ouabain is a component of a plant once used by African warriors to make poison-tipped darts.
Researchers gave a small dose of this toxic compound to rats and then looked at their sperm.
Dr. Gunda Georg says ouabain can be effective in paralyzing sperm without side effects.
"We're particularly excited about this project because it doesn't really interfere with sperm development, as far as we know," said Dr. Georg. "We want to have them go down in fertility and maintain this for awhile, and then we want to see that fertility come back."
Dr. Georg says this pill could be on the market in about 10 years if all goes well.
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