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GSK submits Cervarix™ licence application to Japan’s health authorities


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GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) today announced that it has submitted a licence application for its cervical cancer candidate vaccine Cervarix™ to the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW). This is the first vaccine for the prevention of cervical cancer to be filed for approval in Japan.

GSK’s cervical cancer candidate vaccine is formulated with a novel proprietary adjuvant system called AS04, intended to enhance immune response and increase duration of protection. The licence applied for is for the prevention of cervical cancer and precancerous lesions associated with the most common cancer-causing human papillomavirus types.

The incidence of cervical cancer in Japan is on the increase.[1] With 2,500 deaths[2] and 7,000 new cases diagnosed per year2, cervical cancer has become the most common cancer in Japanese women in their 20s and 30s and the second most common cancer in Japanese women overall.2

“With rising rates of cervical cancer, especially in younger Japanese women, Japanis a priority country for GSK’s cervical cancer candidate vaccine, said Jean Stėphenne, President and General Manager, GSK Biologicals.

“This filing submission includes a vast amount of data on the efficacy and safety of the candidate vaccine in Asian women. The submission follows other recent approvals across the Asia-Pacific region, and launches in Australiaand the Philippines. We look forward to the opportunity of ensuring that Japanese women will equally have access to our vaccine, for protection against this life-threatening disease.”

The file submitted to the MHLW includes data from clinical trials in almost 30,000 females 10 to 55 years of age across four continents. The submission also included data from the largest Phase III cervical cancer vaccine efficacy trial to date[3],which demonstrated that GSK’s cervical cancer candidate vaccine was highly efficacious and was generally well tolerated. A third of patients in this key trial were from Asia[4], which means that we have a very balanced population included in the trial.

Recent European marketing authorisation, granted on 21st September 2007, indicates GSK’s cervical cancer candidate vaccine for the prevention of precancerous cervical lesions (high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia [CIN] grades 2 and 3) and cervical cancer causally related to human papillomavirus (HPV) types 16 and 18.[5] The indication isbased on data generated in girls and women aged between 10 and 25.[6],[7]

Novel adjuvant system

GSK’s cervical cancer candidate vaccine is formulated with a novel proprietary adjuvant system called AS04, which is designed to enhance the immune response and increase the duration of protection against cancer-causing virus types.

Published data have shown that the candidate vaccine, formulated with this adjuvant system, induces an immune response of higher magnitude and persistence compared to the same vaccine composition, formulated with conventional aluminium hydroxide adjuvant alone.[8]


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