The Cancer Registry of Norway has carried out research on human papillomavirus (HPV) and cancer, since the 1990s. Today, we also have our own research group that focuses on epidemiological HPV Research.
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The research group has focus on studies regarding HPV-related illnesses and participates in evaluating the effectiveness and safety of the HPV-vaccine, Gardasil, in the Nordic countries. The group carries out studies on an individual and a population level.
The research comprises incidence, prevention, normal progression and development of cancer in regard to HPV. HPV has been connected with several different diseases and types of cancer where cervical cancer is the most common.
There are two types of vaccines on the market today that prevent certain HPV types. Gardasil was approved for use in the USA and Europe in 2006. This vaccine protects against two HPV-types that can lead to cancer, HPV 16 and 18 and two HPV-types that can lead to the development of genital warts, HPV 6 and 11. The vaccine was included in the Norwegian childhood vaccination program in 2009.
The research group works with different projects and evaluates the effect of the Gardasil- vaccine on the individual and public level. The goal is to increase knowledge regarding the best means of preventing cervical cancer and other cancers connected to HPV. The main research emphasis is on cancer and pre malignant lesions in the cervix, vagina and outer genitalia.
We are examining, among other things, changes in incidence in the population at large. We are also evaluating late effects and Gardasil security when given to women as part of the clinical testing of the vaccine. Further, we shall carry out a large survey where the goal is to look at lifestyle factors and HPV related diseases in the female population, as we introduce the HPV vaccine.
The research group also wishes to look at the relationship between HPV and other types of cancer, and has as a goal to identify biological markers in order to get a better picture of tissue damage due to an HPV infection.
These projects are funded by the manufacturer of the vaccine MSD/Merck, the Cancer Registry of Norway and the Norwegian Cancer Society.