HPV VACCINE (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 – Sci and Tech)

News-CRUX-10     5th March 2024        
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Context: January was observed as Cervical Cancer Awareness Month. Additionally, every year, March 4 is observed as International HPV Awareness Day.

HPV Vaccine

  • About: HPV is a common sexually transmitted infection (STI) transmitted through skin-to-skin contact, with around 40 strains known to spread through sexual activity.

o Approximately 80% of sexually active individuals will contract an HPV infection at some point, though healthy immune systems often clear the virus.

  • Also known as: Human Papillomavirus
  • HPV Strains and Health Impacts: Certain strains of HPV are responsible for genital warts, while others can lead to various cancers if left untreated.
  • Recommended Ages: HPV vaccination is recommended at ages 11–12 years, with the option to start as early as 9 years.
  • Types of HPV Vaccines:

o Licensed Vaccines: Three HPV vaccines—9-valent HPV vaccine (Gardasil 9, 9vHPV), quadrivalent HPV vaccine (Gardasil, 4vHPV), and bivalent HPV vaccine (Cervarix, 2vHPV)—have been licensed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

o Cervavac is the first Indian-made HPV vaccine by the Serum Institute of India. 

  • Comprehensive Protection: All three HPV vaccines protect against HPV types 16 and 18 which cause most HPV cancers.