A chronic, low-dose regimen of the antiprogestin ZK 137 316 prevents pregnancy in rhesus monkeys

M. B. Zelinski-Wooten, K. Chwalisz, S. A. Iliff, C. L. Niemeyer, G. G. Eaton, D. L. Loriaux, O. D. Slayden, R. M. Brenner, R. L. Stouffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Continual administration of low doses of the antiprogestin ZK 137 316 was previously reported to permit ovarian/menstrual cyclicity, but disrupt endometrial growth in macaques. The contraceptive efficacy of this regimen was tested in female rhesus monkeys (10 per group) treated daily with vehicle (controls), 0.01 or 0.03 mg ZK 137 316 per kg body weight for 30 days before and during continual co-habitation with males of proven fertility. Treatment continued until confirmation of pregnancy or for 5 months after pair-housing with males. Mating and vaginal sperm were evident in all females. A cumulative pregnancy rate of 90% (9/10) was observed in the controls. Of the 10 animals receiving 0.01 mg/kg, four conceived during the first 2 months of pairing (P = 0.06) with no further conceptions. No pregnancies were observed in the 0.03 mg/kg group (P < 0.01). Timely, overt menses occurred at a higher frequency in the 0.01 mg/kg group than the 0.03 mg/kg group. However, corpora lutea were present in ovaries from both groups during the last treatment cycle, indicating that ovarian cycles occurred. Thus, chronic administration of low-dose ZK 137 316 that permits continued ovarian cyclicity and a high incidence of timely menses, prevents pregnancy in non-human primates. This regimen may provide a novel method of contraception for women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2132-2138
Number of pages7
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1998


  • Antiprogestin
  • Contraception
  • Menstrual cycle
  • Pregnancy
  • ZK 137 316

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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