National Catholic Register

News

Brazil Readies ‘Male Pill’

BY Jim Cosgrove

September 1, 1996 Issue | Posted 9/1/96 at 1:00 PM

 

THECATHOLICCHURCH and pro-life organizations in Brazil are concerned about the commercialization of a male contraceptive pill, which the Brazilian laboratory Hebron recently announced will be ready for the market early next year. The product, whose commercial name will be “Nofertil,” has no side effects, according to the laboratory.

“Nofertil”—which in Portuguese means “non-fertile”—has been approved by the World Health Organization. It has been tested on 500 men from different countries from Latin America, Asia and Africa, according to a laboratory spokesman.

But Brazilian pro-life organizations since have argued that the test results are incomplete.

The pill contains “gosipol,” a chemical substance taken from cotton seeds, which blocks the action of the sperm, according to Hebron.

Pro-life protests, originally timed for the pill's public introduction, have already started. (Alejandro Bermudez)