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Old 06-10-2006   #1
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Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

An experimental vaccine prevented women from becoming persistently infected with a virus that is associated with half of all cervical cancers, researchers reported in the November 21, 2002, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine (see the journal abstract of the study).


Human papilloma viruses (HPV) are extremely common sexually transmitted infections. In more than 90 percent of cases, the infections are harmless and go away without treatment.


However, certain types of HPV increase women’s risk for cancer of the cervix (the neck of the womb). HPV-16, the virus type that was the focus of the current study, is found in 50 percent of cervical cancers. About a dozen other HPV types are involved in most other cases of the disease.
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Old 06-10-2006   #2
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

Continued...

Rare instance
Although the vast majority of HPV infections do not progress to cervical cancer, the rare instance when HPV infection persists seems to be important to the development of the disease.
“If a woman tests positive for HPV once, that does not mean she is likely to get cervical cancer,” says Allan Hildesheim, Ph.D., a senior investigator in the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics at the National Cancer Institute (NCI). “If she tests positive repeatedly over a period of years, that is more worrisome.”
The current study, he says, “is an exciting first step toward a vaccine that can prevent cervical cancer.” However, larger studies are needed to confirm that the vaccine is safe and effective for healthy young women, he adds.

Three shots
The study involved 2,392 women from 16 to 23 years in age. Participants were randomly assigned to receive three shots of either an HPV-16 vaccine or a placebo (a dummy substance). The study was double-blinded -- that is, neither the investigators nor the study participants knew who got the vaccine and who got the placebo. Participants were followed for an average of 17 months after getting the third shot.
Some women had HPV-16 infections or other cervical abnormalities when they enrolled in the study; others developed the infection before they received all three shots. These women (859 enrollees) were excluded when the researchers calculated the vaccine’s effectiveness.
Of the remaining 1,533 women, 41 developed HPV-16 infection -- all of these women were in the placebo group. Nine of the 41 women with HPV-16 infection went on to develop precancerous lesions (areas of abnormal tissue that may become cancerous). Twenty-two other women from the placebo group also developed precancerous lesions on their cervixes, but these were not associated with HPV-16.
By comparison, no one who got all three vaccine shots developed an HPV-16 infection. Twenty-two women receiving the vaccine did develop cervical abnormalities that can lead to cancer but these precancerous lesions were not associated with HPV-16.

Limitations
The vaccine tested in this study has several limitations, noted NCI’s Hildesheim. For one thing, the vaccine offers no protection against other types of HPV that can also cause cervical cancer. In addition, it’s unknown whether the vaccine’s protection against HPV-16 is long-lasting. Finally, it does not prevent HPV-16 infections already present at the time of vaccination from progressing to cancer.
The study, which was supported by Merck Research Laboratories, will continue until all the participants have been followed for four years. Laura A. Koutsky, Ph.D., of the University of Washington in Seattle, led the team of researchers who conducted this study. An editorial by Christopher P. Crum, M.D., of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston accompanies the report. There are other efforts to develop a cervical cancer vaccine, as well, including one trial sponsored by NCI that is not yet open to enrollment.

Pap Tests Still Needed
Most cervical cancers develop slowly through a series of abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix, changes most often related to an HPV virus. Regular Pap tests can detect these changes and the abnormal tissue can be removed. Pap tests would still be needed even if the experimental vaccine used in this study proves widely effective because the vaccine only works against one kind of HPV.
Pap tests are not 100 percent accurate, however, and many women do not have the tests regularly. In one national health survey, a fifth of women aged 18 to 64 had not had a Pap test in the past three years. A vaccine that prevented the HPV infections known to be behind most cervical cancers would be a powerful addition to disease prevention strategies.
Each year about 15,000 women in the United States learn that they have cervical cancer; an estimated 4,100 women will die of the disease this year. Worldwide, about 500,000 new cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed each year, resulting in 250,000 deaths. The disease is the second or third most common cancer among women (cervical cancer and colorectal cancer are virtually tied for second place after breast cancer).

http://www.cancer.gov/clinicaltrials...er-vaccine1102

I saw this on the news tonight, and decided to do a little more research. I think it's awesome news. I know you only have to worry about it if you have HPV, but hopefully it means getting closer to treating other types of std's.

I did a google search, and came up with these statistics:

The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2006, about 9,710 cases of invasive cervical cancer will be diagnosed in the United States.
Some researchers estimate that noninvasive cervical cancer (carcinoma in situ) is about 4 times more common than invasive cervical cancer.
About 3,700 women will die from cervical cancer in the United States during 2006.
Cervical cancer was once one of the most common causes of cancer death for American women.

Read More

"Research has clearly shown that HPVs are the major cause of cervical cancer. Studies also suggest that HPVs may cause a fraction of the cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina, and penis, and some cancers of the oropharynx (the middle part of the throat that includes the soft palate, the base of the tongue, and the tonsils)."

http://newscenter.cancer.gov/newscen...2-issue4/page2

"Cervical cancer is a malignancy of the cervix. Worldwide, it is the second most common cancer of women. It may present with vaginal bleeding but symptoms may be absent until the cancer is in advanced stages, which has made cervical cancer the focus of intense screening efforts utilizing the Pap smear. Most scientific studies have found that human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is responsible for >90% of the cases of cervical cancer. There are 7 most common types of HPV - 16, 18, 31, 33, 42, 52 and 58.[1] Types 16 and 18 being the most common cause of the cancer. Treatment is with surgery (including local exicision) in early stages and chemotherapy and radiotherapy in advanced stages of the disease. An effective vaccine for the two most common strains of HPV has recently been licenced."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cervical_cancer

Anyways, I think this is a REALLY REALLY good thing...obviously.

I also heard that it will be first available to women between the ages of I think 16-35, and will initially cost $400-$500. But, once the FDA approves it it will be covered by most insurance companies then a co-pay is all it will cost.
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Old 06-10-2006   #3
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

I think it's a GREAT thing. Of course, the religious right are already saying that this gives the opportunity for teens to be sluts without worrying about the consequences. Ugh. Anyway, rep for posting this!
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Old 06-10-2006   #4
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

i think that's really insane, considering that cervical cancer was once the one of the leading causes of death among women, according to statistics.

also, "certain types of HPV increase women’s risk for cancer of the cervix (the neck of the womb). HPV-16, the virus type that was the focus of the current study, is found in 50 percent of cervical cancers. About a dozen other HPV types are involved in most other cases of the disease."

-from one of the links i've already posted.

why would anyone want to keep this from half of our world's population? mothers die from these types of things.

the big thing is preventing cancer. it's not going to encourage sex.
cervical cancer is mainly found in women 45 and up.

people like that are destroying our society by preventing the treatment of diseases to spread their own bullshit gospel.
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Old 06-11-2006   #5
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

i seem to recall a correlation between the amount of partners a women has and her chances of getting cancer of the cervix. i do remember it goes up with the number of partners but i don't recall the exact figures. i want to say three partners increases the chances by 15% but don't quote me.
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Old 06-11-2006   #6
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

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Originally Said by poopy
i seem to recall a correlation between the amount of partners a women has and her chances of getting cancer of the cervix. i do remember it goes up with the number of partners but i don't recall the exact figures. i want to say three partners increases the chances by 15% but don't quote me.
i had a biology teacher that said the more sex a woman has, the more likely she is to develop types of cancer in that area because the area is delicate skin or something like that and i didn't really understand it then.

but she said "ladies of the evening" develop cancers because of it.

it's like the skin doesn't repair itself right time after time. i think that could relate to what you are saying, because women with lots of sexual partners are generally more sexually active, maybe?
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Old 06-12-2006   #7
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Re: Vaccine Protects Against Virus Linked to Half of All Cervical Cancers

Quote:
Originally Said by poopy
i seem to recall a correlation between the amount of partners a women has and her chances of getting cancer of the cervix. i do remember it goes up with the number of partners but i don't recall the exact figures. i want to say three partners increases the chances by 15% but don't quote me.
Well, that's with all STDs in general. The more partners you have, the more risk you have of getting any type of STD. But there are other factors, including age (average age of diagnosis for women is 50-55), obesity, cigarette smoking, women whose sisters or mothers have/had it, women with weakened immune systems, and even having sex earlier than 'normal' can increase a woman's chance of getting cervical cancer.
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