What is the competition to PDE inhibitors?

A short while ago, viagra managed to get its patent protection extended in the US. This will prevent the generic manufacturers from introducing cheaper versions of the drug. Obviously, this is bad news for men with erectile dysfunction. Without effective competition, prices stay high and sexual activity could become unaffordable. So what's in the pipeline as an alternative and how effective are these treatments likely to be? One of the problems with condoms is many men find them inconvenient and distracting. That makes the launch of a new condom packed with gel a good way forward in preventing unwanted pregnancies and reducing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. The gel helps men maintain their erections for longer. This is going through regulatory approval in Europe and expects to be on the market later this year. Obviously, the gel can simply be rubbed into the penis for the same results. So far, there's no sign of an application for the FDA for approval but it should not be difficult. The drug is currently used in the treatment of angina and all it will take is an extension of its existing US license. We have the same idea of absorption through the skin applied to patches. These can be stuck on to the body anywhere and once the drug is absorbed into the bloodstream, the erection forms when the body is stimulated.

There's also a new drug in development to increase libido. This is a hormone treatment and would be marketed to both men and women. It works in the brain to increase the desire for sex. In the first stage of testing, it also seems to reduce the appetite for food so this could be a double treatment. Enjoy great sex and lose weight at the same time. The real benefit should be in reducing the problem of performance anxiety. Already available in some countries comes Zydena which is mainly aimed at the problem of premature ejaculation but is also said to improve hardness.

Is Viagra changing?

Other than this, all the development effort is going into providing the PDE5 inhibitors like viagrain different formats. So, for example, pills that melt in the mouth are now available in different flavors - mint seems to be popular. Look around and you will find soft and chewable versions. The longer term solution may come from gene therapy but this is too far away for it to be considered real.