If there were a vaccine available that could prevent an infectious disease, wouldn't you jump at the chance to be vaccinated? No, not for H IV infection--although this disease is equally important. Instead, think smallpox, poliomyelitis, tetanus, and hepatitis A and B. Following in the exalted footsteps of these earlier vaccines, there are a couple of new kids on the block in the fight against infectious diseases. Gardasil[R], from Merck & Co., Inc., and Cervarix[TM], from GlaxoSmithKline, were recently approved to fight certain sexually transmitted strains of human papillomavirus (HPV), which is associated with genital warts and the development of cervical cancer. In March 2007, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended that Gardasil be used as a routine vaccination for adolescent girls and young women. One would think that implementing an immunization program against a highly communicable disease would be straightforward, but Gardasil has become the subject of much debate, probably because the disease in question is one that is transmitted sexually. Sound familiar? But we're getting ahead of ourselves. Let's back up a bit to figure out how vaccination against HPV became such a controversial subject.