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The multiple efforts to find the perfect condom | Info | Saejob

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At this time almost 30 billion condoms are offered a 12 months world wide.

He was the chief of one of many first nice civilizations of Europe about 5,000 years in the past, however in accordance with legend, King Minos of Crete had an enormous drawback: his semen was toxic.

A number of of that king’s mistresses are stated to have died after he ejaculate “snakes and scorpions” when having intercourse.

Whereas his was a reasonably uncommon venereal illness, it spawned what’s now a standard innovation: King Minos is the primary particular person on file to make use of a condom.

The one he used was made with the bladder of a goat and he helped maintain his companions protected throughout intercourse (though there’s some debate as as to whether he or they used the item).

At this time almost 30 billion condoms are offered a 12 months world wide. An estimated 45 million HIV infections have been prevented from its use since 1990, in accordance with the United Nations-funded group UNAIDS.

However on daily basis they maintain registering one million infections of venereal ailments, in accordance with the World Well being Group (WHO). And an estimated 80 million undesirable pregnancies happen every year.

This has led many public well being specialists to insist that condoms ought to play a fair higher function in stopping the unfold of illness and in household planning.

Trendy male latex condoms provide 80% or extra safety towards most sexually transmitted ailments.

This determine consists of the wrong and even inconsistent use of the male condom. When used appropriately, condoms will be as much as 95% efficient in stopping HIV transmission, in accordance with research.

The power of condoms is often examined by inflating them or filling them with liquid till they burst. Picture: AFP

However getting them to make use of them appropriately stays a problem, says William Yarber, director of the Rural Middle for the Prevention of AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Illnesses (STDs) at Indiana College, USA.

“In line with our analysis, many need to use condoms however have had detrimental experiences doing so. Imagine within the ‘unhealthy popularity’ of condoms or do not know a lot about it right use of them and easy methods to use them with out sacrificing pleasure ”, he continues.

There are a selection of the explanation why some are reluctant to make use of condoms: spiritual causes, poor intercourse schooling, or as a result of they dislike the sensation of placing them on.

The breakups or landslides are comparatively uncommon, however they do occur. Some research estimate that they happen between 1% and 5% of circumstances and this may additionally have an effect on confidence and the choice to make use of them or not.

Graphene, the ‘very best’ materials

This has pressured researchers to search for methods to enhance present condoms with revolutionary supplies and applied sciences, within the hope that it will result in extra use.

A promising concept for creating stronger condoms relies on the usage of graphene, a novel ultra-thin layer of carbon atoms that was first recognized by Nobel Prize-winning scientists on the College of Manchester, UK, in 2004.

Aravind Vijayaraghavan, a supplies scientist on the Nationwide Graphene Institute of the college, believes that this materials, the “thinnest, lightest, strongest and finest conductor of warmth on this planet”, might be the very best for bettering properties of condoms.

Researchers are continually searching for methods to enhance the condom. Picture: AFP

His workforce acquired a grant from the Invoice and Melinda Gates Basis in 2013 as a part of a marketing campaign to develop revolutionary condom designs.

However graphene can’t be remodeled into an object with out mixing, so Vijayaraghavan’s workforce is combining it. with latex and polyurethane.

“Graphene is a nanoscale materials, which is a single atom thick and some micrometers broad,” he explains.

“However on that small scale it’s the strongest materials on the planet. The problem is to switch that power from the nanoscale to the macroscale, by which we use real-world objects, ”he continues.

“We do that by combining robust graphene particles with a weak polymer, reminiscent of pure rubber latex or polyurethane. Then the graphene imparts its power to the weak polymer to make it stronger by reinforcing it on the nanoscale. “

20% thinner with the identical resistance

This mix can enhance the power of a skinny layer of polymer by 60% or permit condoms to develop into 20% thinner whereas retaining their present power, provides Vijayaraghavan.

Though graphene preservatives nonetheless Will not be avaliables, the workforce is presently engaged on the commercialization of its revolutionary materials.

The primary condoms have been created from sheep intestines, like this one from round 1800. Foto: HERITAGE IMAGES/GETTY

One other group working to make the fabric utilized in condoms thinner and stronger relies on the College of Queensland in Australia.

There they’re creating prototypes that mix latex with spinifex, a local herb of the nation.

Resin spinifex It has lengthy been used as an adhesive by indigenous Australian communities, and researchers discovered that they may reinforce latex with nanocellulose extracted from the pulped herb.

The ensuing latex layers have been as much as 17% stronger and might be made extra skinny.

They reportedly have been capable of produce a condom that would face up to 20% extra strain in a rupture take a look at and inflate as much as 40% greater than industrial latex condoms.

Nasim Amiralian, a supplies engineer on the College of Queensland and one of many challenge leaders, notes that the workforce is now working with business producers to optimize formulations and processing strategies.

He hopes that they are going to have the ability to make condoms which might be stronger and maybe as much as 30% thinner than the present ones.

Options to latex

Though latex is the commonest materials utilized in making condoms, many individuals discover it uncomfortable and infrequently require the usage of lubricant.

Latex can be comparatively costly, which will be a further barrier to condom use.

This materials can be used for different functions, reminiscent of producing stronger surgical gloves that permit those that put on them to really feel extra.

Round 4.3% of the world’s inhabitants suffers from a latex allergy, and though condoms manufactured from polyurethane or made with a pure materials are additionally obtainable, in addition they have their disadvantages.

Polyurethane condoms break a lot simpler than latex ones, and people with a pure membrane include small pores that don’t block the transmission of pathogens reminiscent of hepatitis B or HIV.

One other group of Australian scientists, in the meantime, need to exchange latex with a brand new materials referred to as strengthened hydrogel.

Most hydrogels – a water-swollen community of polymers – are typically delicate and fluffy, however those who researchers at Swinburne College of Expertise and the College of Wollongong in Australia are engaged on are robust and elastic like latex. .

Latex condoms typically require lubricants to make them extra comfy. Picture: AFP

This workforce has established a spin-off firm referred to as Eudaemon, which is making an attempt to construct on the preliminary GelDoms analysis.

Since they do not include latex, they will keep away from allergy issues related to conventional condoms, however the workforce says their hydrogels can be designed to really feel extra like human pores and skin and due to this fact have a extra pure really feel.

Because the hydrogel incorporates water, they’re additionally self-lubricating or will be created with STD medicine constructed into their construction that’s launched throughout use.

Make sure that condoms will be utilizing with out extra lubrication is one other problem to which scientists have directed their consideration. A gaggle of researchers from Boston College within the USA has developed a coating that may be utilized to condoms and permits them to develop into self-lubricating.

The researchers based a spin-off firm, HydroGlyde Coatings, for his or her innovation. Stacy Chin, CEO and co-founder, says that self-lubricating condoms can face up to no less than 1,000 thrusts, in comparison with solely about 600 thrusts for normal condoms.

Most lubricants utilized in latex condoms are typically sticky, repel water, and put on off whereas in use. Nevertheless, researchers at Boston College discovered that they may bond a skinny layer of hydrophilic polymers to the floor of the latex.

When polymers come into contact with water, they develop into slippery to the contact. Because of this may use moisture from bodily fluids to remain slippery and cut back friction throughout use.

“Our coating can keep on latex condoms throughout intercourse to offer steady lubrication. This could remedy one of many greatest issues in condom use, ”says Chin.

In line with a small survey of 33 individuals, the coating reduces friction by 53% in comparison with an unlubricated latex and performs equally to commercially obtainable lubricants.

In small-scale blind use trials, 70% of the members most popular prophylactics with the brand new layer to these with private lubricant.

Because the product is presently in a commercialization course of, Chin says he can not reveal any extra particulars about how lengthy it will likely be earlier than they’re obtainable.

Most condoms have a tendency to come back in normal sizes that modify in size and girth, which signifies that sizes are hardly ever good. Picture: AFP

Dimension is one other difficulty that’s typically an issue.

A 2014 Indiana College examine signifies that the size of the erect penises of 1,661 sexually energetic males within the US ranged from Four to 26 cm, whereas their girth ranged from Three to 19 cm. The typical size of a male condom is 18 cm.

In response, World Safety Company presents condoms that are available ten completely different lengths and 9 circumferences.

Cynthia Graham, a professor of sexual and reproductive well being on the College of Southampton and a researcher on the condom workforce at Indiana College’s Kinsey Institute, has additionally been evaluating whether or not new methods of placing on condoms may make them simpler to make use of.

For this they’ve been testing a brand new kind of condom that makes use of a built-in applicator that lets you place the condom with out touching it.

It comes with a wrap that encompasses a tab for straightforward gripping and opening.

The target is forestall the potential harm of a condom in a traditional foil wrapper. It makes use of a pair of unwind strips that unhook when totally unrolled, an try to verify it’s comfortable earlier than use. However the gadget has but for use in scientific trials as a consequence of lack of funding.

And there are different issues that get in the best way of its use.

“It’s fairly frequent for individuals to not use condoms; They use them to stop being pregnant as an alternative of illness. Many younger individuals mistakenly suppose that the majority are treatable, so they do not care about it, ”says Graham.

Even with stronger, thinner and extra comfy condoms, it’s clear that so much may be achieved with extra schooling.