What do you think ? Despite claims that it encourages under-age sex, medical journal The Lancet has called for compulsory cancer jabs for schoolgirls. The magazine has published an editorial which says all schoolgirls aged 11 and 12 should be vaccinated against the sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer. The jab, against what is effectively a sexually transmitted infection, is controversal because it is argued that they encourage under-age sex. But The Lancet states that Europe should follow the lead of the US state of Michigan, which passed a bill on September 21 ruling that all 11 to 12-year-old sixth grade girls must be immunised. "This is the first legislation of its kind in the USA, and a decision from which the EU members states should take heed," said the editorial. There is also growing support for the vaccination of boys. They too can carry human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus spread by sexual intercourse that can trigger cervical cancer. Studies have shown that a female-only vaccination would be only 60-75% as effective as strategies targeting both sexes. Previous gender-specific programmes had not always succeeded, said the journal. In 1995, Britain's rubella immunisation programme was modified after 25 years to include boys as well as girls after a rise in the number of pregnant women contracting the disease. "For effective and long-term eradication of HPV, all adolescents must be immunised," said The Lancet.