Clinical Immunotherapeutics

, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp 293–306 | Cite as

Papillomavirus Vaccines

Current Status
  • John Cason
Review Article Disease Treatment Review


Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) cause a variety of proliferative lesions, the vast majority of which are benign and self-limiting. Infection with certain HPVs has however been linked with malignancy. Of particular interest is HPV-16, which is strongly associated with cervical carcinoma.

Advances in molecular biology now permit the testing and introduction of vaccines aimed at preventing primary HPV-16 infections, or treating established HPV-16 carcinomas. For success, the actual immunisation strategy chosen will be dependent upon a detailed knowledge of the natural history of HPV-16 infection. Although it has long been assumed that HPV-16 is primarily acquired solely by sexual contact, recent studies have shown that HPV-16 can also be transmitted from mother to child.

This review considers the prospects for prophylactic and therapeutic vaccination against HPV-16 with respect to the potential protein targets and context of disease history. The majority of technical problems regarding the development of vaccines have now been overcome. What is now required is investment by the major pharmaceutical companies so that definitive clinical trials can be undertaken.


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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Cason
    • 1
  1. 1.The Richard Dimbleby Laboratory of Cancer Virology, United Medical and Dental Schools of Guys and St Thomas’The Rayne Institute, St Thomas’ CampusLondonEngland

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