Dutch researchers apply to FDA to run trials of sex pills for women

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The American drugs authority FDA is this week considering a request from an Almere research institute to carry out phase three clinical trials on a pill to increase sexual desire in women, the Volkskrant reports on Monday.

Researcher Adriaan Tuiten and his team are hoping for the green light to test the pills on 1,200 women. Phase three trials are the last stage before a pill can be brought onto the market, the Volkskrant says.

Tuiten estimates one in five women experience lessened sexual desire and puts the market for his product - a combination of existing drugs - at €6bn within 10 years.

Medicalisation

The drug has been welcomed by television sexologist Goedele Liekens, who says it will save relationships. Others, however, criticise the drug for medicialising sex.

Tuiten has developed two pills. One, Lybrido, is for women who are not interested in sex and is a combination of testosterone and Viagra.

The other, Lybridos, is aimed at women who block out sexual desire for various reasons. It is a combination of testosterone and anxiety drug buspirone, the Volkskrant says.

Trials

The Journal of Sexual Medicine published the results of preliminary research using 50 women last year. It showed an increase in sexual desire in women using the pills.

However, Anton Grootegoed, head of Erasmus teaching hospital's reproductive health department, told the paper he had serious doubts about the new pills.

‘Lybrido and Lybridos are combinations of existing drugs and that is the Achilles heel,' he said. ‘Do they work better in combination than separately? If not, then Tuiten does not have a product.'

According to Emotional Brain website, the company has applied for FDA rather than European approval as 'the shortest route to ensuring global marketing'.



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