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Tuesday, February 20, 2018

The best means of contraception declared a poison that smeared the arrows of the African hunters

A group of specialists from a number of American universities have modified a substance called ouabain extracted from the bushes and were used by hunters in Africa. The resulting compound reportedly can be used as a means of male contraception and is not dangerous to humans.

photo: pixabay.com

Ethiopian tribes two thousand years ago found that arrows, oiled them, stopped the heart of a wounded animal, and in the XVIII century, scientists came to the conclusion that in extremely small quantities it can be used in the treatment of arrhythmia and other cardiovascular diseases. Today the poison with a similar purpose is not being used, because further research has shown that it’s too risky.

In the course of research conducted earlier, ouabain was identified as a “side effect” — a poison reduces the activity of spermatozoa, thereby temporarily reducing fertility. However, it is natural to use it as contraception too dangerous.

To fix this, the specialists have modified the substance by replacing some of its components, which was due to the effects of the poison on the heart. Eliminating “primary” effect of ouabain, the experts have ensured that the substance only reduces the mobility of the flagella of sperm cells, without exerting any other noticeable influence on the body. No long-term consequences of the use of unusual substances

The study was published in scientific Journal Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.

Last year the researchers, representing the Russian Academy of Sciences, found in the venom of marine polyps-anemone bactericidal substances that inhibit the work of the pain receptors. According to experts, these proteins are not habit forming and can potentially be used to create painkillers.

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