In an extended education session at ASCO, the promise of HPV-related cancer prevention and screening in the age of HPV vaccination was discussed. In many countries, frequent and repeated PAP screening is used to detect HPV related cervical cancer.
Now, with vaccination, there is the possibility of screening once or twice in a lifetime—that’s very exciting. This creates the need for more sensitive methods, such as HPV DNA testing to allow for these longer screening intervals. Many national programs are now evaluating the potential for HPV DNA testing, as well as other assays and biomarkers for HPV precancer.
Despite progress, cervical cancer remains a significant issue, especially in low and middle income settings where there is a strong correlation between cervical cancer and poverty.
The global oncology community is responding to this unmet need with global health training and travel grants for visiting professionals from high income nations, as well as the development of resource stratified guidelines. All of these which address the realities of this global health issue.