Initiation and completion rates for the human papillomavirus vaccine series are significantly lower in the South than any other geographic region, according to a new study from researchers at UTMB. The study, published online in the journal Vaccine, examined the association between geographic region and HPV vaccine uptake and completion rates among women ages18-26 in 12 states. It is the first study of its kind to include initiation and completion rates and assess data across multiple years. “If a lower rate of HPV vaccine uptake in the South persists, it could contribute to the national burden of cervical cancer in the long run,” says UTMB’s Dr. Abbey Berenson. The news also appears on, Medical Xpress and BioPortfolio.