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HPV vaccine works for boys: Study shows first clear benefits
Date:2/4/2011

associated with depression, social stigma and loss of self-esteem. Complications of wart treatments are also quite common, he said.

The double-blind study included 4,065 healthy men aged 16-26 years, spanning 71 sites in 18 countries. Of those patients, 85 percent reported having exclusively female sexual partners, with the remainder self-identified as having sex with men.

The men were tested at the onset of the trial for previous exposure to each strain and were randomly selected to receive either a placebo or a vaccine that targeted HPV strains 6, 11, 16 and 18. Men with a history of anal or genital warts or lesions were excluded. Participants then received six follow-up examinations over the following three years to assess the vaccine's effectiveness.

In addition to preventing warts, the vaccine also effectively prevented HPV-persistent infection in 86 percent of the participants without previous exposure.

"This is the first study to show that this vaccine works in boys," Giuliano said. "As long as we have a poor record of vaccinations in girls, boys should also be vaccinated."

Vaccinating boys also should help prevent HPV transmission to women, as well as transmission from men to men, she said, and help reduce the incidence of the virus throughout the general population. This could be particularly significant, Palefsky added, since only 30 to 40 percent of teenage girls in the U.S. have received even one of the three recommended doses of the vaccine.

The authors noted that while they find it likely that the prevention of HPV infection and disease in men will have additional benefits, such as preventing anal, genital and throat cancers, these benefits need to be directly demonstrated through further clinical trials.


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Contact: Kristen Bole
kristen.bole@ucsf.edu
415-502-6397
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert

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