The world's first contraceptive injection for men may be available for consumer use within six months, after Indian scientists announced that clinical trials have been completed on the drug, according to The Independent.
The birth control, which is purportedly effective for 13 years, has now been sent to the national Drug Controller General of India for final approval.
In a statement to the Hindustan Times, Dr. RS Sharma, a senior scientist with the Indian Council of Medical Research, stated "The product is ready, with only regulatory approvals pending with the Drugs Controller."
"The trials are over, including extended, phase 3 clinical trials for which 303 candidates were recruited with 97.3% success rate and no reported side-effects. The product can safely be called the world’s first male contraceptive," Dr. Sharma continued.
The level of testing required means that the contraceptive won't be available for at least six months.
VG Somani, the Drug Controller General of India, elaborated: "It’s the first in the world from India so we have to be extra careful about approval. We are looking at all aspects, especially the good manufacturing practice (GMP) certification that won’t raise any questions about its quality."
"It will still take about six to seven months for all the approvals to be granted before the product can be manufactured."
This form of birth control works by injecting into a tube that contains sperm near the testicles. The injection contains the polymer, Steryene Maleic Anhydride, which was developed in the 70's to inhibit sperm production.
If approved, the injection will be the first male contraceptive to be publicly offered to consumers in the world. It will reportedly be advertised as a long-term alternative to a vasectomy, given that it remains active for 13 years.
As of now, sterilisation remains the only approved method of male contraception, despite the fact that the oral contraceptive pill for women has been available since 1960.