'Supercondom' made of hydrogel and plant-based oxidants combats HIV/AIDS, enhances sexual pleasure

By @Guneet_B on
A worker places condoms onto a packaging belt at the Chinese condom manufacturer Safedom's factory in the town of Zhaoyuan, located 100 km (62 miles) south of the city of Yantai, Shandong Province February 6, 2012.
A worker places condoms onto a packaging belt at the Chinese condom manufacturer Safedom's factory in the town of Zhaoyuan, located 100 km (62 miles) south of the city of Yantai, Shandong Province February 6, 2012. Reuters/David Gray

An American professor of Indian origin has created a “supercondom” that can help combat HIV/AIDS while enhancing sexual pleasure at the same time.

The new supercondom created by lead researcher Mahua Choudhury and her team at the Texas A&M University effectively prevents HIV from infecting the individual. What makes the condom special is its ability to kill the deadly virus even if it breaks.

The new supercondom is made up of an elastic polymer called hydrogel. The Economic Times reports that a plant-based antioxidant with anti-HIV properties is entangled in the hydrogel.

The researchers have come up with the hydrogel condom with an aim to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and to help increase the global use of condoms as a tool against HIV. The researchers said that the team has not only created a novel condom material to prevent HIV/AIDS but also aims to eradicate the infection completely from the world, if possible.

“Supercondom could help fight against HIV infection and may as well prevent unwanted pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases, and if we succeed, it will revolutionise the HIV prevention initiative,” said Choudhary, reports the Hindustan Times.

The water-based hydrogel used by the team to create the condom is commonly available and is widely used for medical purposes, including creation of contact lenses. The antioxidant called quercetin prevents HIV replication. If the condom breaks, quercetin is released, which in turn provides an additional protection.

As of now, the research team is planning to test the condom in the next six months. Once tested and approved, the condom will be available to the public for protection against the deadly infection. It is estimated that HIV/AIDS has killed more than 39 million people around the world since 1981.

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