New target group for HPV vaccines: newborns and infants?
A new study by Bosch at al. reveals that newborns and infants are the new target group of HPV vaccines (Gardasil and Cervarix).
Reframing cervical cancer prevention. Expanding the field towards prevention of human papillomavirus infections and related diseases.
The reframed paradigm of cervical cancer prevention will include strategic combinations of at least four major components: 1) routine introduction of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines to women in all countries, 2) extension and simplification of existing screening programs using HPV-based technology, 3) extension of adapted screening programs to developing populations, and 4) consideration of the broader spectrum of cancers and other diseases preventable by HPV vaccination in women, as well as in men. On a global scale, vaccination of newborns and infants is well established and has developed a successful working infrastructure. The hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination programs offer a model for HPV introduction in which newborn and infant immunization achieves a rapid reduction in the prevalence of the HBV carrier rates in immunized cohorts of children, and of liver cirrhosis and liver cancer decades later. In contrast, screening for cervical pre-cancer is largely restricted to industrialized populations and upper social classes in developing countries. The expertise gained by vaccination programs worldwide needs to be coordinated with the traditional cervical cancer prevention community of gynecologists and pathologists. Significant political and advocacy efforts at the Global level (World Health Organization, other United Nations agencies and The GAVI Alliance) need to be organized and reinforced to achieve a meaningful reduction in HPV transmission and its related health conditions and cancers. This desirable goal is now scientifically and technologically attainable, and great progress is being made in obtaining financing for global HPV immunization. This article forms part of a special supplement entitled "Comprehensive Control of HPV Infections and Related Diseases" Vaccine Volume 30, Supplement 5, 2012.
Vaccine. 2012 Nov 20;30 Suppl 5:F1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.05.090