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Vaccine against HPV given to nearly 2.5 million young girls in the U.S

The United States government said on Thursday that a quarter of the young girls aged between 13 and 17 received Merck & Co.’s Gardasil, a vaccine for the Human Papilloma Virus, which causes Cervical Cancer, last year.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a report containing facts about how many young girls were given the vaccination that prevented genital warts and cervical cancer in young women aged 9 – 26 in 2006.

The CDC stated that at least 25% of the girls had received a minimum of 1 out of the three shot dosage, a figure that translates to about 2.5 million young girls. A little less than one third of the adolescents got vaccines against a new, potentially deadly meningitis virus, in the form of another new vaccine.

Scientists stated that it usually takes nearly 7 to 8 years for newly found vaccine to have at least a 90% coverage rate, which would be their eventual goal. 25% was a great start, but still points out that there’s a long way to go.

Gardasil provides immunity against four different strains of the Human Papilloma Virus, which usually causes genital warts and cervical cancer.

Merck & Co.’s has estimated that over 18 million Gardasil doses have been produced and supplied in the United States, and that it is estimated to generate approximately $1.5 billion in 2008 sales.

GlaxoSmithKline stated that they did not expect their rival vaccine, Cervarix, to get the approval of the U.S until late 2009.

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