HPV Immune?

If you get an HPV vaccine, and the take is appropriate, you are basically immune to getting HPV. But the question is, are others immune as well? Antibodies can be in our system from infection or vaccination, and they can protect us from new infections. Naturally acquired antibodies (just after being exposed to the HPV) probably are not as strong as the ones that we get from being vaccinated, but actually researchers are not sure. About 50-70% of women exposed to a particular HPV type will develop what is called type-specific antibodies. Since there is not a routine test of our antibody level after we get an infection, its unclear whether naturally acquired antibodies provide complete future protection against new HPV infection. It's even more uncertain as to whether these antibodies can also help prevent the progression to precancerous disease of the cervix (also called CIN). Researchers in the PATRICIA HPV 16/18 trial. Published Costa Rica HPV 16/18 vaccine trial looked at natural protection in their control groups who actually had these antibodies in their system. They showed there was a reduced risk of infection, but not a lot, with highest antibody blood levels, and if a patient had them she had about a 50% reduced risk of new hpv risk infection. And hpv 18 titers ass with 64% reduced risk of infection. And the antibody positive patients had less likelihood of persisting with HPV infection, and their precancerous changes were a bit more likely to reduce. But in general they had very small numbers of patients in each group, so it will take more research to know if any of us are truly HPV immune.


  1. Tune in today to hear more discussion on this...http://will.illinois.edu/focus/program/womens-health5


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