Leading pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline has announced the approval of its cervical cancer vaccine that will now help women in South Africa to prevent cervical cancer.
The Medicines Control Council has approved the registration for the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) cervical cancer vaccine, which will accelerate South Africa's fight against this fatal illness.
Cervical cancer is the number one killing cancer in South Africa. The approval of the vaccine is seen as a huge step in the direction of better health for all South African women.
The vaccine has been designed with a "novel proprietary adjuvant system called AS04." This aids in enhancing the immune response in the body and increase the duration of protection against cancer-causing virus types.
According to GSK a woman dies of cervical cancer every two minutes, worldwide. In South Africa, one in 26 women runs the risk of developing cervical cancer in her lifetime.
GSK Medical Director, Dr Navin Singh who made the announcement on Tuesday; said: "It is a little-known yet disquieting fact that more women develop and die of cervical cancer than any other type of cancer in South Africa, physicians will now have access to this important vaccine to help protect women against this disease."
According to Dr Singh, " protection strategies against cervical cancer should include routine screening together with a vaccine designed to provide targeted, durable protection against the most common cancer-causing types."
Sue King from GSK informed the media that the vaccine took more than 10 years to develop, and it offers 100% protection against two sub-group viruses that cause cervical cancer.
The vaccine has to be administered by a doctor or a nurse at a pharmacy for a six-month period.