“IUDs, but for men” Charlottesville company one step closer to male contraceptive

Published: Oct. 4, 2023 at 2:29 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - ‘The biggest development in male contraception since the vasectomy’ is what the Charlottesville-based Contraline says it’s working towards.

With more than thirty options the responsibility of birth control often falls on women, but Contraline is trying to change that.

“By providing a really appealing option for men, I think we’re going to reduce unintended pregnancies and actually alleviate or reduce some of the burdens that women have to go through as the main bearers of contraception right now,” Contraline CEO Kevin Eisenfrats said.

Eisenfrats started working on the idea when he was a student at the University of Virginia. He says it’s become even more important after the overturning of Roe versus Wade.

“I know that men really want a new male contraceptive. So I really embarked on this crazy journey of starting a company to develop the first one,” Eisenfrats said.

The gel is inserted in an outpatient surgery.

“The doctor basically finds the vas deferens, which are a pair of tubes that transport sperm, they apply anesthesia to it, they inject this gel inside the vas deferens, and then it actually doesn’t even need stitches or sutures, because it’s that minimally invasive,” Eisenfrats said.

This gel then blocks all of the sperm.

The whole procedure takes between ten and fifteen minutes and can be fully reversed,

“Contraline is interesting, because we have the first one that’s non-hormonal, so none of those systemic side effects,” Eisenfrats said.

Eisenfrats says historically the focus has been on women.

“The science is honestly a little bit easier to stop the one egg once a month, rather than to stop the 10s of millions of sperm that are produced every heartbeat,” Eisenfrats said.

Currently, the gel is being tested in clinical trials.

“We’ve actually been already doing it in humans in Australia. And we’re excited to bring this to the United States in the next one to two years,” Eisenfrats said.

The goal is to have it widely available in the next three to four years.

Do you have a story idea? Send us your news tip here.