Bill Gates Offers $100,000 For ‘Next Generation Condom’

(CNN) — Bill Gates is putting out a call to inventors, but he’s not looking for software, or the latest high-tech gadget. This time he’s in search of a better condom.

On its Grand Challenges website, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is offering a $100,000 startup grant to the person who designs “the next generation condom that significantly preserves or enhances pleasure” and promotes “regular use.”

It may sound like the setup for a joke, but the goal is deadly serious. While researchers call condoms one of the best ways to stop the spread of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, getting people to use them is another story.

The foundation wants to see something that will lead men and women outside of a committed relationship to stop and think twice before having unprotected sex. The startup grant could lead to $1 million in further funding.

“Male condoms are cheap, easy to manufacture, easy to distribute, and available globally, including in resource-poor settings, through numerous well-developed distribution channels,” the foundation says. Nevertheless, many people are reluctant to use them because they complain that prophylactics interfere with pleasure and intimacy. This creates “a trade-off that many men find unacceptable,” the foundation notes.

In some places and cultures, condom use is often seen as a sign that a man has AIDS, and many women won’t sleep with such men. Female condoms are even more difficult to use and women are often afraid to suggest using them.

“Any advance or new design that gets people to use condoms would be a big plus,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and one of the world’s leading AIDS researchers, said in an interview with CNN. He says great strides have been made in treating HIV infection in Africa, but for every person who is treated two more become newly infected.

The numbers are indeed startling: 34 million people in the world are living with HIV, according the 2012 UNAIDS World AIDS Day Report. About half of them don’t know they’re infected, according to Fauci.

That problem exists in the U.S. as well, particularly in minority communities.

“Although African-Americans comprise 12% of the population, they account for 45% of all new HIV infections nationwide and 65% of all new infections among women,” Fauci said previously. “A substantial portion of newly infected African-Americans are bisexual and homosexual men.”

The Gates Foundation hopes that “new concept designs with new materials can be prototyped and tested quickly.”

“Large-scale human clinical trials are not required,” it adds. “Manufacturing capacity, marketing, and distribution channels are already in place.”

But building a better condom may not be as easy as it seems. Some sources say the first recorded use of a condom-like sheath was in Egypt in 1350 B.C., and people have been complaining about it — and trying to improve on it — ever since.


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Posted by on March 30, 2013. Filed under WORLD. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

15 Responses to Bill Gates Offers $100,000 For ‘Next Generation Condom’

  1. umupondo Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    Less HIV infections from wholes better

  2. 1Sinorita Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    sounds pretty cool…pleasure is what’s important

  3. ωoмαภ Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    let the diks fak themselves, they are the cause of HIV

  4. Abantu Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    That’s good news to my ears,My moto is that if you are not my wife,no condom no sex, I would rather masturbet and forget.

  5. kokus Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    benzene causes aids/hiv and one of the benzene pollutions is condom and food we take in so what is the big deal about this plan?????? google benzene polution please

  6. kelvin Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Ba kokus naimwe ni boza iyo. Elaborate more on yo benzene thing or else no one shall seperate me from the love of condoms.

  7. kakolwe Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    That is where the problem lies, just how to feel what you feel without the baloon! Iliko bad, but then, thanks Bill for not giving up on your quest for ‘ubune’.

  8. Genaro the Analyst Reply

    March 30, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    just release the cure why is Aids a big issue in Africa?? Ans: because it is big business, our people are dying for the sake of creating employment. Africa Wakeup. Analyze

  9. Ex-fbi Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 8:48 am

    Bill shud not fool us,the drug fo cure is there called tetrasil, an antidot developed by bio engineer s as a precursor incase they accidentally infect themselves during devlopment ,all this arv things they sent to us dnt exist there ,hiv is a bio weapon fo US army jst like ebola virus,the pleasure condom is intended to increase utility baseline resulting in masive infections in africa & other thirdworld nations,if he cares why cant he fund african research on aids cure herbs?wake up u pipo muzasila while watching ,general the analyst am wth you man

  10. jinx Reply

    March 31, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Bill, just assist Dr sondashi fund him, he has discovered Hiv cure,now its expensive.


    March 31, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    Investing a certain percentage of the money in treating those that are already infected and channeling another portion towards sensitization of abstainance would be the best investments. As It would deal with changing of the mind set clients.
    Provision of condoms to a greater extent encourages promiscuous behavior.

  12. kokus Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:10 am

    However, that was proposed long back by selfish people to use benzene product. This cause appeared years before the first cases of Kaposi’s sarcoma and pneumocystis pneumonia, two of the “banner” AIDS diseases, appeared in some gay men in the major U.S. metropolitan areas in the late ’70′s. This cause is a chemical toxin, is still with us today in 2000s, and contributes to the plight of many: it is benzene (and its chemical derivatives) and it was, and is, found in sexual lubricants + food stuffs,to continue…..

  13. kokus Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 11:15 am

    …..continue from last….and GOD clearly said it that my people will perish due to lack of brains ;and some fools also said please hide knowledge in books since all people are busy chasing money no time to read so wake up; Google AID/HIV ;benzene pollution /condom connection and food stuff.

  14. Ex fbi Reply

    April 1, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    @kokus ,Wel said,zambians wil easily get moved and sign fo the money wen it comes for product trial,shed more light on benzene in condoms most ar nt aware i guess

  15. kokus Reply

    April 2, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Ex FBI=== check for BENZENE, LUBRICANTS AND AIDS….By Stephen Byrnes
    will explain all to you—Cool,,man!!

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