Driven by a desire to help end the HIV epidemic, Project SLIP was a collaborative effort by Eidos, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the Penn Center for AIDS Research to design the next-generation condom. For this interdisciplinary undertaking, Eidos leveraged Penn’s world-class and robust research enterprise to bring together experts in behavioral medicine, material science, and mechanical engineering to work on Project SLIP.
Instead of latex, polyurethane, or polyisoprene, Project SLIP re-imagined the material used to make condoms by developing a unique double-network hydrogel that is intrinsically lubricating yet boasts superior elasticity and high tensile strength. Project SLIP was able to further push the envelope by loading tenofovir, a drug commonly used to prevent and treat HIV, into the hydrogel as a potential layer of added protection.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) granted Project SLIP a patent in 2022 for their innovative hydrogel invention.