Researchers stumble upon a compound that may finally lead to a birth control pill for men.
A lab which focuses on developing new drugs to undermine the molecular memory of cancer cells that tell them to divide found that those memory markers are distributed throughout the genome, the DNA that makes up a person's genetic code, and this has been likened to post-it notes that give cells instructions.
The team at the lab was experimenting with a compound developed in Dr Bradner's lab called JQ1, which was originally synthesised at Dana-Farber to block BRD4, a cancer-causing gene.
They discovered that it appears to target a protein specific to the testes called BRDT that instructs sperm to mature.
The compound does not appear to do damage to sperm-making cells, but they forget how to create mature sperm while under the influence of the drug.