HPV Vaccine Research From Japan Withdrawn

Scientific Reports retracting HPV article because research approach did not support study objectives
(Precision Vaccinations)

Scientific Reports announced today it is retracting this study because ‘the experimental approach does not support the objectives of the study’, reported Science Magazine.

The paper, Murine hypothalamic destruction with vascular cell apoptosis subsequent to combined administration of human papillomavirus vaccine and pertussis toxin, was published by a group led by Toshihiro Nakajima, of Tokyo Medical University, on November 11, 2016.

The study was designed to elucidate the maximum implication of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine (Gardasil) in the central nervous system.

This research describes impaired mobility and brain damage in mice given an enormous dose of HPV vaccine along with a toxin that makes the blood-brain barrier leaky.

However, the co-administration of pertussis toxin with high-levels of HPV vaccine is not an appropriate approach to determine neurological damage from HPV vaccine alone, said Nature.com. Pertussis toxin is not an ingredient in the vaccine.

Additionally, this paper alarmed public health advocates in Japan and worldwide because it seemed to provide some scientific basis for what had been anecdotal reports of alleged HPV vaccine side effects, including headaches, fatigue, and poor concentration, said Nature.com.

The original authors of the study do not agree with this retraction.

At the time, lead author, Nakajima defended their paper in an email to Science, claiming the experimental strategy was similar to those commonly used in other mouse studies.

Nakajima also wrote that the group was preparing a detailed response to the criticisms.

"I'm pleased that finally, they did manage to retract it, but it was a very long process," says Alex Vorsters, a molecular biologist at the University of Antwerp.

However, this controversy seems likely to continue.

In the USA, Merck's Gardasil 9 HPV vaccine is approved by the FDA and confers protection against 9 HPV strains including 16 and 18.

Vaccines, like any medicine, can have side effects, says the CDC. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of vaccines to the FDA or CDC.