HPV vaccine shown effective at reducing cancer-causing infections
A vaccine that could reduce cervical cancer rates by 75 percent is safe and 95 percent effective, according to a study of 1,113 women in North America and Brazil.
The vaccine against the most common cancer-causing strains of human papillomavirus was 100 percent effective at preventing the persistent infections that cause cervical cancer, researchers report in the Nov. 13 issue of the British journal, The Lancet.
"This study provides objective evidence that this vaccine will work, it’s going to save lives and will have a major impact on women’s health care," says Dr. Daron G. Ferris, a study co-author who directs the Gynecologic Cancer Prevention Center at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta. "This is a tremendous advancement for women in particular, although it’s likely the vaccine will one day be given to men as well," Dr. Ferris says of the bivalent vaccine that protects against types 16 and 18, which also cause penile cancer.
MCG was the largest study site in North America, with 83 women age 15 to 25 in the study taking three doses of vaccine over six months, then being followed for up to 27 months.
When the vaccine was taken correctly, it was 91.6 percent effective at reducing incident or new infections, the study showed. Researchers noted the vaccine prompted the body to produce high numbers of antibodies to fight the HPV infection and the only side effects were some redness and irritation at the vaccine site. "The efficacy of the bivalent vaccine against HPV 18 infection is particularly important," Drs. Matti Lehtinen and Jorma Paavonen of the National Public Health Institute in Finland note in a companion editorial. Pap smears, used to detect cervical cancer or precancerous changes of the cervix, are not as good at detecting adenocarcinoma, the type of cervical cancer most associated with HPV 18. "Adenocarcinoma is difficult to find even when we know it’s there," Dr. Ferris says of tests and biopsies that typically follow an abnormal Pap smear.
Dr. Ferris notes that the vaccine won’t prevent all cervical cancers because it doesn’t protect against all cancer-producing strains. However, a quadrivalent vaccine that also protects against types 6 and 11 – the most common causes of genital warts – already is under study, and more of the some 100 strains of the virus likely will be added as various vaccines are further developed, he says.
Should the Food and Drug Administration approve these vaccines for general use, the target audience likely would be girls and boys age 10 to 12 who are not yet sexually active, Dr. Ferris says.
The 15-25-year-old age group featured in The Lancet study has the highest incidence of this ubiquitous virus; the lifetime risk for HPV infection is about 80 percent in men and women, he says. About 13,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year in the United States. Penile cancer is rare, accounting for less than 1 percent of all cancers in men; the risk is higher in uncircumcised men.
Toni Baker | EurekAlert!
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...