Human papillomavirus vaccine update

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Abstract

With the approval of Gardasil® (Merck and Co., Inc., Whitehouse Station, NJ) in June of 2006 and the pending approval of Cervarix® (GlaxoSmithKline, London, UK), two prophylactic human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines will be available for clinical use. Randomized controlled trials have shown that both vaccines are safe and highly effective in preventing persistent infection and lesions caused by HPV 16 and 18—the types responsible for 70% of cervical cancers worldwide. Determining an effective vaccination strategy is now the most pressing issue facing clinicians, parents, public health officials, and policy makers. We discuss the appropriate age of vaccination, vaccine acceptance, implementation strategies in low resource settings, and the future of screening.

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