Genitope’s MyVax, Gardasil and other new Cervical Cancer Vaccines

Cervical cancer is the development of cancerous cells within the transformation zone of the cervix. Cancer is a disease characterized by uncontrollable cell division that has the ability to invade surrounding tissue. Cervical cancer has the ability to spread into the vagina and uterus. If cervical cancer is not properly diagnosed, through regular pap smear exams, one will not receive immediate treatment, which is definitely needed. Even though many women have the proper antibodies necessary to naturally fight off the disease, cervical cancer is still the second highest cancer, which primarily threatens the females of our society. Though the Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), smoking, and prolonged use of birth control pills that extends beyond five years, will heighten the chances of cervical cancer, the human papillomavirus (HPV) is the leading cause. 270,000 women die every year from cervical cancer; 37,000 of those women are Americans. HPV’s, type 16 and type 18, are virus’s that are responsible for 70% of cervical cancers. The FDA recently approved a vaccine, Gardasil, to combat the threat cervical cancer poses to our society, with several other promising vaccines under clinical trial. One’s most powerful defense will always be awareness, but even when that fails, there is always hope that science will reveal the cure.

Most vaccine’s are simply harmless, non-living, bits of virus that are placed within the biological system in order to create a desired immune response. Since HPV is known to cause cancer, possessing a vaccine that will create differing antibodies, which protect against as many HPV as possible, will be necessary for the best protection. Gardasil [Quadrivalent Human Papillamavirus (Types 6, 11, 26, 18) Recombinant Vaccine] is the first FDA approved vaccine for combating cancer. Clinical trials revealed that Gardasil will offer 100% protection from HPV, strains 16 and 18, as long as treatment is administered before infection. There are not enough clinical trials to assure safety in the use of men, but the vaccine has been approved for girls as young as 9 years old. The vaccination is composed of three injections over a six month period of time, Merck & Co., the manufactures of the vaccine are charging $360 for the treatment. Gardasil has yet to be approved by the national Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), but will be considered by the ACIP on June 29, 2006.

Cervarix is another cervical cancer vaccine that promotes the desired antibodies that fight off HPV, type 16 and 18. Clinical trial has proven Cervarix creates an immune response that, in women ages 15 to 55, continued protecting the body from HPV for a year after injection.

There is a more personalized way of seeking a vaccination for cervical cancer, MyVax Personalized Immunotherapy, created by Genitope Corp., is genetic immunotherapy specifically designed for ones biological system. MyVax assists the bodies own natural defense system through protein management and immunological carriers. Genitope is currently modifying a method that will assist the body in using its own defensive mechanism in order to more effectively combat cancer.

Cervical cancer is a threat that cannot be ignored. One must combat this disease with awareness of a need for personal health. Regular check-ups with a trusted doctor, as well as knowledge of FDA approved cures, will assist one live a long and healthy life.

References:

Gardasil [Quadrivalent Human Papillomavirus (Types 6, 11, 16, 18) Recombinant Vaccine
http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_pi.pdf

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)
Cervarix
http://www.gsk.com/ControllerServlet?appId=4&pageId=402&newsid=847

Genitope Corp (MyVax Personalized Immunotherapy)
http://www.genitope.com/myvax.html

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