Vaccine decreases pre-cancerous symptoms in Aussie women by 93%

Researchers have reported an incredible 93% drop in genital wart diagnoses (symptoms of the human papillomavirus) in young women who have received the HPV, or cervical cancer, vaccine.

The vaccine, co-created by Professor Ian Frazer AC (whose research was supported by an early ACRF seed-funding grant), became available for Australian girls in 2007.

The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of NSW and the University of Melbourne together with both the Sydney and Melbourne Centres of Sexual Health, looked at the medical data of 85,770 patients during pre-vaccination period (2004-2007) compared to the vaccination period (2007-2011).

They found that 10% of women were diagnosed with genital warts between 2004–2007, but this figure decreased dramatically to just 3% during the vaccination period: a 93% drop in genital wart diagnoses in women vaccinated against HPV.

“The most vaccinated group going through our clinics, Australian-born women under the age of 21, had quite a remarkable decline of 93 per cent in the prevalence of warts,” said Professor Basil Donovan from the University of NSW.

“It’s a big saving on the clinical service because warts are time-consuming and difficult to treat.”

In the group of women aged 21-30 there was a drop in genital warts of more than 70%, and the rate of genital wart infection fell from 11.5 per cent in 2007 to less than 1 per cent in 2011.

The study has been published in the British Medical Journal, with an accompanying editorial by Simon Barton and Colm O’Mahony indicating:

“It is worth celebrating the extraordinary success of Australia’s national human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination programme, which was implemented five years ago.

“These are exciting times in the science of HPV and the world can confidently look forward to the virtual elimination of genital warts, recurrent laryngeal papilloma, most genital cancers, and some 60% of head and neck cancers.”

Click here to read about how the HPV vaccine is being distributed to teenage boys via Australian schools: https://acrf.com.au/2012/world-first-hpv-vaccination-plan-will-protect-young-australian-men-from-cancer/

Click here to read about the ACRF grant which seed-funded the development of this life-saving vaccine: https://acrf.com.au/cancer-research-grants/cancer-research-projects/centre-for-immunology-cancer-research/

Check out The Australian article on this great news! http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/cancer-hopes-up-as-vaccination-causes-drop-in-hpv/story-e6frg6n6-1226624701292