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Japan Could Approve Cervical Cancer Preventive Vaccines During 2008

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

Japan is considering approving applications for preventive cervical cancer vaccines submitted by GlaxoSmithKline and Merck's Japanese branch Banyu Pharmaceutics. GSK and Banyu separately submitted applications for approval in September and November 2007, respectively. The two companies are the only cervical cancer preventive vaccine makers in the world.Cervical cancer preventive vaccines can prevent 70 percent of human papillomavirus infection. HPV is found to be the main contributing factor for cervical cancer. Over 80 countries around the world have approved the use of the vaccine.In Japan, the two companies are gathering testing data and estimated to submit results within the year. The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare has commented that it will make a cautious and quick examination upon receipt of the data and is considering approvals from other countries.Worldwide, cervical cancer is the second cause of death among young females. In Japan, cervical cancers cases are also increasing. Annually about 7,000 cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed and 2,500 deaths are reported. The increase of occurrence in women of 20-30 years old is especially significant. (Click here for more.) Cervical Cancer Preventive Vaccines Could Be Approved In Japan During 2008

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