HPV vaccines to prevent cervical cancer and genital warts : an update
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences . Biomedical Sciences
Vaccine / International Society for Vaccines. - Amsterdam
, p. 1595-1601
University of Antwerp
Cervical cancer is an important public health problem worldwide, and especially in developing countries. The link between cervical cancer and oncogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) infection has been clearly established. Furthermore, non-oncogenic HPV are responsible for the majority of genital warts. Two prophylactic HPV vaccines are available, which have the potential of considerably reducing HPV-related morbidity and mortality. Both vaccines are based on virus-like particles of the L1 capsid protein, and are highly efficacious and immunogenic if given before exposure to HPV, i.e. to adolescent girls between 9 and 13 years of age in a three-dose schedule. This review describes the immunology of natural HPV infections and the immune response evoked through vaccination. The current duration of protection is 8.4 years with the bivalent vaccine (HPV16/18) and 5 years with the quadrivalent vaccine (HPV6/11/16/18). Research is on-going to evaluate the efficacy of the current vaccines in a two-dose schedule, as compared to the recommended three-dose schedule. To increase the protection, the development and testing of a nine-valent prophylactic HPV vaccine (HPV6/11/16/18/31/33/45/52/58) is being undertaken. Research is also directed towards therapeutic vaccines and the development of a prophylactic L2 vaccine.