Aussie sex gel coated on condoms may help prevent STIs

November 14th, 2007 - 2:26 am ICT by admin  
The experimental lubricant, VivaGel, which helps in blocking HIV and herpes infections, will be coated on condoms under an agreement between Melbourne-based Starpharma and the owner of condom company Durex.

The vaginal microbicide, which is still under clinical trials has been found to prevent HIV and genital herpes in animal and human, which works by preventing viruses from entering cells, avoiding infection.

The active ingredient in the microbicide is dendrimer, a molecule that binds itself to the viruses and prevents them from infecting healthy cells.

Also the gel was found to be a potent contraceptive, in early research stage.

Starpharma chief executive Dr Jackie Fairley said that microbicides were considered one of the most attractive new prevention options for STIs and also that it is a much-needed option for third world nations like sub-Saharan Africa where HIV and genital herpes rates were the highest in the world.

“We feel the health sector has focused on finding a cure or treatment to disease, whereas we believe very strongly that prevention is a preferable option in curbing the disturbing increase in STIs in both the developed and developing worlds,” Dr Fairley said. (ANI)

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