As a method of birth control, condoms have many advantages of low-cost, easy to use, and providing protection against numerous sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However, the drawbacks to more universal and consistent use of condoms are their tendencies to decrease pleasure and/or induce the loss of erection. The reason for these obstacles is that condoms are made from hydrophobic materials, such as latex, polyurethane, and polyisoprene. These hydrophobic materials are excluded from the human physiological environment, such as the surface of the skin. Thus, currently used condoms always cause the foreign body sensation to decrease pleasure and/or induce the loss of erection. Although condoms prevent unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, "around the world only 5 percent of men wear them," the New York Times reported in 2013. The human cell membrane is a biological membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm of living cells. It involves in a variety of cellular proc...
As a method of birth control, condoms have many advantages of low-cost, easy to use, and providing protection against numerous sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However, the drawbacks to more universal and consistent use of condoms are their tendencies to decrease pleasure and/or induce the loss of erection. The reason for these obstacles is that condoms are made from hydrophobic materials, such as latex, polyurethane, and polyisoprene. These hydrophobic materials are excluded from the human physiological environment, such as the surface of the skin. Thus, currently used condoms always cause the foreign body sensation to decrease pleasure and/or induce the loss of erection. Although condoms prevent unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, "around the world only 5 percent of men wear them," the New York Times reported in 2013. The human cell membrane is a biological membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm of living cells. It involves in a variety of cellular processes such as ion conductivity, cell adhesion and cell communication. Cell membrane consists of a lipid bilayer with embedded proteins. Here, we have successfully prepared skin-like condoms to mimic the structure of real cell membrane using polyisoprene latex as the framework with the support of Gates Foundation. The novel skin-like condoms exhibited increased hydrophilic properties and longer extension than commercial polyisoprene condoms. This project plans to develop skin-like condoms with natural feeling, high effectiveness, high convenience and low cost. We anticipate the enhanced ease of use, efficacy of the product, and enhanced sexual pleasure the condom provides will make it the preferred contraceptive and prophylactic device of its kind in the world. Development of the skin-like condom should encourage wide-spread use of the condom, and thus reduce unwanted pregnancy and potential transmission of STD’s, including HIV. Currently, about 20 billion condoms are needed each year worldwide. We anticipate providing 5 ~ 10 billion skin-like condoms each year to the world market to benefit human health.
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