A study found that 73-77 per cent of cervical cancer cases were caused by either HPV type 16 or 18, both of which are prevented by the current vaccine used in the UK. Previous studies have suggested that 70 per cent of cases were caused by these types.
The researchers said they believed that vaccination could reduce cervical cancer cases from 3,000 a year to under 700.
A substantial proportion of less serious cervical disease is also likely to be prevented by immunisation, the researchers said. This would mean that fewer women would need to be called back for further investigations and treatment following cervical screening.