Good news in the fight against the HIV/AIDS, HPV and other sexually transmitted diseases. An Australian company has just announced the development of the world’s first condom that kills the HIV and HPV viruses with 99.9% efficacy.
Starpharma, a developer of dendrimer products based in Melbourne, Australia announced that the new condoms may be available to consumers within months.
Starpharma is partnering with Australia’s largest condom maker, Ansell to bring the condoms to market.
Peter Carroll, the president of Ansell, said that they expect to bring “’ground-breaking new sexual health” products to store shelves very soon.
The condom, called the VivaGel, contains a gel lubricant which kills HIV, as well as HPV and herpes. In testing, the condom has been shown to deactivate 99.9% of HIV, HPV and herpes virus strains. The antivriral gel, called VivaGel, is designed to kill the viruses when used.
The news sparked hope that transmission rates of sexually transmitted diseases could be reduced, as well as the rates of unwanted pregnancy.
The condoms have received approval in Australia by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration, which should allow mass production to begin.
The actual ingredient in the VivaGel that kills the viruses is called “astodrimer sodium”. It is an antimicrobial drug first designed to fight HIV and other STD’s. The condom is coated with a gel that contains this ingredient and that enables it to kill the viruses.
In Australia, the brand name of the condoms will be ”LifeStyles Dual Protect”.
The VivaGel is also undergoing trials in the United States as a possible treatment for bacterial vaginosis.
Once it hits the market, the “LifeStyles Dual Protect” condom brand will be the only condoms available that incorporate sexually transmitted disease fighting compounds.
Health organizations in Australia hail the condoms as a big step forward in reducing transmission rates of sexually transmitted diseases.
Though condoms that have spermicide in them have been available for years, this is the first time any disease fighting ingredient has been included in any product.
A company in Japan, Okamoto Industries, has also received a license to bring the product to the market in Japan.
The news about the condom’s approval sparked hope and excitement in health circles, with renewed hope that infection rates for HIV and HPV, which have been rising in many countries for the past decade after years of steady declines, will finally start to decrease.
The news is also exciting for the condom industry, which could be rejuvenated by the new virus fighting condom.