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UPDATE 1-WHO clears Glaxo's Cervarix for developing world

* WHO green light prerequisite for use in poor countries

* Financing issues for vaccine yet to be resolved (Adds details, background)

LONDON, July 9 (Reuters) - GlaxoSmithKline's GSK.L cervical cancer vaccine Cervarix has won a green light from the World Health Organisation (WHO) for use in developing countries, although how the shot will be paid for has yet to be resolved.

WHO “prequalification” is necessary for UN agencies and the non-profit GAVI Alliance to purchase the vaccine, and Glaxo said on Thursday it hoped the move would help speed access to Cervarix globally.

Jean Stephenne, head of vaccines, said the drugmaker planned to work with GAVI, other agencies and governments to identify financing mechanisms.

“We’re exploring a variety of distribution partnerships to ensure Cervarix will protect women and girls around the globe,” he said.

Vaccines like Cervarix and Merck & Co's MRK.N rival product Gardasil could be particularly valuable in the developing world, since 80 percent of the 280,000 cervical cancer deaths a year occur in poor countries.

But because they are more expensive than standard childhood vaccines, ensuring widespread use will require concessionary pricing by drugmakers and smart financing from donors.

Both Cervarix and Gardasil protect against the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) that causes cervical cancer. (Reporting by Ben Hirschler; Editing by Hans Peters)

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