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HPV vaccine for girls also is effective for boys


Narrator:            This is Science Today. A vaccine routinely recommended for girls to prevent the sexually transmitted infection known as human papillomavirus, or HPV, is similarly effective for boys.

Palefksy:            It's the first presentation of data showing that the vaccine actually works in men and boys aged 16 to 26, similar to the very high efficacy shown in the studies of women.

Narrator:            Study leader Joel Palefsky of the University of California, San Francisco, presented his initial findings to the Center for Disease Control which, based on his results, expanded its vaccination recommendation to include males aged 9 to 26.

Palefsky:            It's approved but it's what we call a permissive recommendation, meaning that it can be given but it's not part of the routine vaccination schedule. Now the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has been reconsidering their recommendation for boys given the availability of the data showing that it also prevents cancer.

Narrator:            That decision should come this spring. Meanwhile, the vaccine is available for free to eligible boys up to 18 years. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.