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Multi-centre study on indigenous HPV tests for Cervical Cancer screening initiated by AIIMS, featured in ET HealthWorld.

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AIIMS starts multi-centre study of indigenous HPV tests for Cervical Cancer screening, ET HealthWorld

In an effort to make Human papillomavirus (HPV) tests more accessible and affordable, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has initiated a study on indigenous HPV tests for cervical cancer screening in India. The study will involve three laboratories – AIIMS, NICPR Noida, and NIRRCH Mumbai – to assess the effectiveness of the “indigenous HPV test” for quick and cost-effective results.

Dr. Neerja Bhatla, Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at AIIMS, mentioned that the indigenous HPV tests being developed in India have the potential to provide results within one to one and a half hours, allowing for prompt planning of further steps. The study aims to validate these tests internationally, making them suitable for export to other countries while significantly reducing the cost compared to existing HPV tests.

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women globally, with India ranking it as the second most common cancer among women after breast cancer. Every two minutes, a woman dies of cervical cancer worldwide, highlighting the urgency for effective screening and prevention measures. India contributes significantly to the cervical cancer burden, with an estimated 127,526 new cases and 79,906 deaths annually.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has initiated the ‘Call for Elimination of Cervical Cancer’ to achieve a cervical cancer-free world by 2030, with targets including screening 70% of women and vaccinating 90% of girls. By conducting this multi-center study with the support of DBT-BIRAC Grand Challenges India and WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), AIIMS aims to contribute towards this global vision of reducing the burden of cervical cancer through accessible and accurate screening methods.

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