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Cancer Researchers Seek Men for Study

February 1, 2005

Researchers at Tampa's H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute recently received a $10 million National Institutes of Health grant to study how human papillomavirus (HPV) infection reacts in men. The grant is the largest ever awarded to study HPV in men and the most the center has received for research on cancer control and prevention.

HPV is the most common STD in the United States, and certain strains of the virus are the cause of most cervical cancer cases. HPV has also been linked to more rare cancers of the anus, penis, and vulva. Researchers hope that by learning how HPV spreads, they can better understand how to prevent it. The grant will fund a study that could help direct use of a promising new HPV vaccine, said Anna Giuliano, a program leader at Moffitt.

The study seeks to enroll 3,000 healthy men ages 18-44: 1,000 men in Tampa, 1,000 in Mexico and 1,000 in Brazil. The Latin American countries were selected because they have the highest rates of late-stage cervical cancer in the world. Researchers hope the study will give them a better idea of what percentage of men get HPV, how often, how long the infection takes to clear, and whether men develop immunity to the virus.

Study participants will be followed for four years, with testing every six months. Those who test positive for HPV would not be treated because no such treatment exists. For more information on the trial, telephone 813-745-6996.

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Excerpted from:
St. Petersburg Times
02.01.05; Lisa Greene

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