In 2006 researchers at the University of Utah were toiling away at what had been dubbed a “molecular condom.” A kind of polymer gel inserted into the vagina before sex that could create an HIV-blocking coating. The old formula had difficulties creating the barrier with high temperature environments. A problem since the target demographic for the invention is women of the sub-Saharan Africa, who want to protect themselves, but may not feel empowered to force their partners to wear condoms.
"Due to cultural and socioeconomic factors, women often are unable to negotiate the use of protection with their partner," says Julie Jay, the study's first author and a University of Utah doctoral candidate in pharmaceutics and pharmaceutical chemistry. The newest composite however has bested that obstacle and researchers are planning on patenting the new gel to get it ready for production.
World changing science, being cooked up right here in Utah. Check the press release for more info on the U researchers’ work.