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Med Microbiol Immunol. 2007 Sep;196(3):121-5. Epub 2007 Feb 21.

HPV-vaccination against cervical carcinoma: will it really work?

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Department of Dermatology and Venereology, University of Rostock, Augustenstrasse 80-84, 18055 Rostock, Germany.


Prophylactic HPV vaccination provides an opportunity to profoundly affect cervical cancer incidence worldwide. The quadrivalent HPV VLP 6, 11, 16, 18 vaccine (Gardasil) and the bivalent HPV VLP 16, 18 vaccine (Cervarix) are effective for prevention of HPV infection and cervical precancerous lesions. The quadrivalent vaccine is also effective for prevention of vulvar and vaginal lesions and genital warts. With the introduction of the vaccines general issues have to be raised such as optimal age for vaccination, duration of protection after vaccination, impact on cervical cancer screening, vaccination of males and feasibility of application to developing countries. The prospects of a vaccine which will protect against the most common viral sexually transmitted infection and thereby, protect against the complications of HPV infection such as cervical cancer is extremely appealing. The success of HPV vaccination as a major public health prevention opportunity, however, will entirely depend on efficient infrastructures to deliver the vaccines and on the acceptance by individuals, parents and health care providers.

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