Prophylactic vaccines are being used for prevention of various infectious diseases. Development of vaccines for contraception is an interesting proposition to control increasing human population. Various hormones such as gonadotropin releasing hormone, follicle stimulating hormone, and human chorionic gonadotropin have been proposed as targets for immuno-contraception. In addition, gamete (spermatozoa, egg) specific proteins have also been proposed as candidate immunogens for developing contraceptive vaccines. Studies carried out in various animal species including humans, using a variety of target proteins, have established as proof of principle that vaccines can be developed for fertility inhibition. Current limitations for their use as human contraceptive vaccines pertain to failure to generate protective antibody response in hundred percent recipients and variability in the duration of protective antibody titres from individual to individual. In spite of these logistic hurdles, contraceptive vaccines based on gonadotropin releasing hormone and zona pellucida glycoproteins have excellent prospects for the management of wildlife population. To achieve this, there is need to develop novel vaccine delivery platforms for providing long lasting immunity.
Keywords: Contraception, Follicle stimulating hormone, Gonadotropin releasing hormone, Gonadotropin releasing hormone agonist, Gonadotropin releasing hormone antagonist, Human chorionic gonadotropin, Human population growth, Immunocontraception, Immunogenicity, Infertility, Luteinizing hormone, Sperm antigens, Vaccine, Wildlife population management, Zona pellucida glycoproteins.