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Cancer Vaccine Project

In this Friday, Feb. 2, 2007 file photo, one dose of the vaccine Gardasil, developed by Merck & Co., is displayed in Austin, Texas. On Thursday, May 9, 2013, the GAVI Alliance, a public-private partnership that's worked with drugmakers to deliver affordable vaccines to poor countries to treat childhood illnesses, announced a program that will team multinational drugmakers Merck & Co. and GlaxoSmithKline with top global health groups to protect millions of girls in the world's poorest countries from deadly cervical cancer. Merck & Co. and GlaxoSmithKline PLC initially will provide 2.4 million doses of their vaccines against cancer-causing human papilloma virus, for a fraction of the cost commanded in Western countries. Merck will supply its Gardasil for $4.50 per dose, and Glaxo its Cervarix for $4.60 per dose. In the U.S., the shots cost well over $100 apiece, and a three-dose series over six months is required.

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