HPV vaccine protects against 90% of cervical cancers

A new HPV vaccine protects against more strains of the virus and could be more effective in preventing cervical cancer than the jab currently used in the UK, a study has found.

HPV jabs: new vaccine could widen protection (Photo: Consolidated Scotland)
HPV jabs: new vaccine could widen protection (Photo: Consolidated Scotland)

The vaccine protects against nine strains of HPV, compared to the four strains covered by current vaccines, and is effective against 90% of the conditions caused by HPV, the researchers say.

The study was sponsored by Merck, which manufactures the vaccine trialled, Gardasil-9.

Dr George Kassianos, the RCGP clinical lead on immunisation, told GP that a surge in new vaccines covering more strains of HPV is expected in the years to come.

Licencing vaccines

New vaccines would have to be fully licensed and assessed before replacing the vaccines currently used on the immunisation scheme, he said.

‘In the next three to five years we are going to see an improvement on the existing two vaccines, in terms of covering more HPV viruses. Once they are available we shall be able to assess and compare with what we have.

‘This vaccine is not yet licensed so there is no practical reason to be contemplating introduction to the UK’s routine immunisation schedule,’ he said.

The nine-component vaccine was tested in 14,000 young women aged between 16 and 26 years. Currently, girls in the UK aged 12 to 13 receive the vaccination.

A related editorial in journal NEJM says the study is ‘a milestone in expanding the coverage of cancers associated with HPV’.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

GMC tells BMA to name the doctors responsible for bullying and harassment

GMC tells BMA to name the doctors responsible for bullying and harassment

Senior BMA representatives could face investigation over harassment and bullying...

BMA sexism report backs overhaul to boost representation of women

BMA sexism report backs overhaul to boost representation of women

The BMA should use quotas and minimum thresholds for at least the next decade to...

Key recommendations from the BMA sexism investigation

Key recommendations from the BMA sexism investigation

A damning report into sexism at the BMA, conducted by top barrister Daphne Romney...

Medicines export ban widened as drug shortages continue

Medicines export ban widened as drug shortages continue

The government has added four medicines to the list of products wholesalers are banned...

Damning report on BMA sexism condemns 'failure of leadership'

Damning report on BMA sexism condemns 'failure of leadership'

Whistleblowers have spoken of feeling vindicated after a damning report condemned...

Flawed GP consultation data could distort access targets, BMA warns

Flawed GP consultation data could distort access targets, BMA warns

Flawed data on GP consultations could leave practices facing unfair access targets,...