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Contraceptive gel made to kill sperm and viruses while boosting libido

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Why use three separate products, when just one will do the trick? That’s the thinking behind an experimental new contraceptive gel that combines a spermicide, an anti-viral agent and a libido enhancer in one formulation.

The non-toxic “trifunctional gel” is being developed by a team of scientists at North Carolina State University, led by Prof. Ke Cheng. It’s made up of a Carbomer acrylic acid polymer base, to which is added the contraceptive gossypol, the antiviral drug tenofovir, and nitroglycerin for stimulating blood flow to the genitals.

In in vitro lab tests, a sample of the gel containing 10 micrograms of gossypol per milliliter was found to kill 100 percent of pig sperm within 30 seconds. Even when lower concentrations of gossypol were used, the gel still eradicated all of the sperm within an 180-second period.

Further experiments showed that the gel inhibited a lentivirus (of which HIV is one type), while not harming epithelial vaginal cells.

Its contraceptive effect was put to the test by dividing a total of 18 female rats into three groups. The gel was applied to the vaginas of one group, while another group was given a commercially available gel containing the spermicide nonoxynol9 – the third group served as a control, receiving no contraceptive. After mating with male rats, the trifunctional gel group had no pregnancies, whereas the nonoxynol9 group had one and the control group had six.

And finally, when the gel was applied to the penises of male rats, the animals were found to mate more often, and to more quickly achieve erections.

The research is described in a paper that was recently published in the journal Bioactive Materials.

Source: North Carolina State University

Source: https://newatlas.com/health-wellbeing/trifunctional-contraceptive-gel/

NEWATLAS

Hidden Egyptian handbook reveals secrets of mummification

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A recently discovered text written around 1450 BCE contains previously unknown details about Egyptian mummification process

A 3,500-year-old Egyptian medical text is shedding new light on the ancient practice of mummification. Recently discovered inside a much larger work, the papyrus document being studied by University of Copenhagen Egyptologist Sofie Schiødt is the oldest known mummification manual.

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Category: Science

Tags: University of Copenhagen, Mummies, Archaeology

Source: https://newatlas.com/science/egypt-mummification-manual-louvre-carlsberg-copenhagen/

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Lasers and plasma shockwaves used to measure ripeness of fruit

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Researchers in Japan have developed a contactless way to measure the ripeness of soft fruit like mangoes

Judging how ripe a piece of fruit is can be a frustrating process for everyone from farmers to shoppers. Now, researchers at Shibaura Institute of Technology (SIT) in Japan have developed a new high-tech way to check, without touching or damaging soft fruit like mangoes. All it takes is a laser and some plasma shockwaves.

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Category: Science

Tags: Food, Fruit, Laser, Food technology

Source: https://newatlas.com/science/fruit-ripe-lasers-plasma-shockwaves/

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Broadcasting tech swaps stadium ads for regional advertising

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Examples of the system showing two different ads (A,B) along with the magenta screen (C) which neither stadium audiences nor TV viewers see

When viewing sports coverage from other countries, it’s common to see sideline advertising boards that are promoting products you’ve never even heard of. This new TV system is capable of digitally replacing the content of those boards, so they’re advertising region-specific products.

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Category: Good Thinking, Lifestyle

Tags: Fraunhofer, Sports, Advertising, Broadcast, Television

Source: https://newatlas.com/good-thinking/fraunhofer-vibotec-sports-advertising/

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Scientists calculate life expectancy of Earth’s atmospheric oxygen

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An artist's interpretation of the atmosphere of Archean Earth, prior to 2.4 billion years ago. A new study suggests it may return to this oxygen-poor, methane-rich atmosphere in about 1 billion years' time

The Earth has an expiry date – in about five billion years, the Sun will expand and swallow up our home world. But it turns out life on Earth could have a much earlier end point. A new study has found that in about a billion years’ time, the atmosphere will lose most of its oxygen rapidly, which may have important implications in the search for life on other planets.

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Category: Environment, Science

Tags: Oxygen, Atmosphere, Earth, Geology, Exoplanet, Extraterrestrial

Source: https://newatlas.com/environment/earth-atmosphere-oxygen-life-expectancy/

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