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New male birth control pill would block sperm, not kill them

A new study offers hope for a male birth control pill that would block sperm by preventing them from being ejaculated during sex.

Male birth control pill 2013 12-03Enlarge
A male birth control pill may be on the horizon that would block sperm by preventing them from being ejaculated during sex. (Wikimedia/Wikimedia commons)

Women (and men) everywhere, rejoice.

A new study offers the best hope yet for a male birth control pill, one that would block sperm by preventing them from being ejaculated during sex — similar to a temporary vasectomy.

And this option wouldn't affect a man's libido or virility.

Previous attempts to develop a male birth control pill have tried either to alter a man’s hormones or to make his sperm ineffective.

Researchers at Australia's Monash University say that could do long-term damage.

"Most of the previous strategies to make a male contraceptive have either been hormonal strategies, which would produce a lot of sexual side-effects or effects on masculinity, or they would make sperm dysfunctional, which might produce long-term effects on offspring. Our strategy avoids all those problems," lead researcher Dr. Sabatino Ventura told the Daily Mail.

More from GlobalPost: Sperm gene discovery could lead to male birth control

The study was published Tuesday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

Scientists at Monash University used mice in their research, genetically modifying them to block two proteins found on the smooth muscle cells that trigger the transport of sperm.

The result? The mice were infertile but otherwise healthy and had sex normally.

Ventura now wants to replicate the genetic process chemically.

He believes a male contraceptive pill could be a reality in about 10 years.

More from GlobalPost: Male birth control by killing sperm with ultrasound?

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/health/131203/new-male-birth-control-pill-works-blocking-sperm