Condoms and vasectomies are traditional forms of birth control for males.
But Chen Chen, a Michigan State University animal scientist and cpolleagues have taken a big step forward in finding an alternative.
The group's research has discovered a way way to turn off the gene that controls sperm production, effectively silencing spermatogenesis in mice, reports the campous publication MSU Today:
Since mice are mammals and use many of the same genes for reproduction as humans, this finding provides a strong lead for future research on human male contraception as well as animal sterilization.
"More than 500,000 men get vasectomies every year," Chen said. "There's a huge market for this research, and now we further understand the genetic underpinnings of sperm development in mammals."