Yet another worthy article questioning the effectiveness of Gardasil:
While Harper firmly believes Gardasil is a valuable vaccine, she says, "I do think it's wrong for physicians to tell parents that it's 100 percent safe." She also has previously spoken publicly about her impression that Merck was too aggressive in marketing the vaccine to preteens and in lobbying state legislators to make Gardasil mandatory for young girls. It's worth noting that Harper, while at Dartmouth, once received grants from Merck to conduct its clinical trials and served on Merck's advisory board, though she has since broken ties with the company.
What's intriguing to me is how much is still unknown about Gardasil. A Merck study published last year shows that a woman's antibody response to the vaccine—which determines its effectiveness—depends in part on whether she has been previously exposed to HPV through sexual contact. In the study, 16-to-26-year-olds who, before they got Gardasil, tested positive for HPV antibodies (an indication that they'd been infected) had a stronger vaccine-induced antibody response to three of the four HPV strains Gardasil protects against compared with those who initially tested negative for HPV.
Thanks to MediaMaven.