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Sexually transmitted infections

Antimicrobial Stewardship

Minimizing health risks and preventing the further spread of STIs.


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Sexually transmitted infections (STI) pose a grave threat to humanity with more than 1 million STIs acquired every year around the world. 1 Curable infections such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and trichomoniasis are estimated to affect more than 350 million people each year and incurable viral infections such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), herpes simplex virus (HSV), human papilloma virus (HPV - that can lead to cervical cancer if undetected) and hepatitis B are projected to affect millions more. 1 The identification of new sexually transmitted infectious agents such as Mycoplasma genitalium further compounds the threat of STI.


Most people affected with STI are asymptomatic or show only mild symptoms, and are not even aware that they are carrying the pathogen. Therefore, screening as well as early detection is essential to minimize morbidity and mortality, and to reduce transmission through the population. Diagnostic tests are crucial for early detection and case management.


The need for early diagnosis for preventing transmission and spread


Control of STIs is a priority for the World Health Organization, especially as drug resistance represents a major threat to STI management.1


STIs are predominantly transmitted through sexual contact. They represent a major global cause of acute or chronic illness and infertility, resulting in substantial morbidity and mortality.2,3 The incidence rate of STIs is increasing in the USA and in many European countries.4,5 This is partially due to an increase in high risk sexual behavior and fewer public health education campaigns focused on STIs.


A rise in reported STIs may also be attributed to improved detection as a result of better diagnostic techniques and screening programs.


Roche offers diagnostic tests for detection of pathogens linked to the greatest incidence of STIs.1


Working toward managing a global health problem


Cervical cancer is nearly 100% preventable, and yet approximately 530,000 women develop the disease each year worldwide and some 270,000 die from it unnecessarily, mostly from low and middle income countries, where access to care is a challenge.6


"Elimination of cervical cancer as a global health issue is within reach for all countries. We know what works, and we know how to prevent and control this disease," says Dr Princess Nono Simelela, World Health Organization.


HPV is the known cause of almost all cases of cervical cancer.7  Roche offers a comprehensive cervical cancer portfolio, which starts with HPV DNA primary screening to identify women at risk, which includes triage and diagnostic tests and prevention strategies. Learn more about the role of HPV in cervical cancer  and what Roche is doing to help create a world where no woman dies from this disease.

  1. World Health Organization (WHO). Available [Accessed May 2019]
  2. World Health Organization (WHO). (2012). Available at: [Accessed May 2019]
  3. Low N, Broutet N, Adu-Sarkodie Y, et al. (2006). Lancet 368, 2001–2016
  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (2017). Available at: [Accessed July 2016]
  5. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). (2015). Available at: [Accessed May 2019]
  6. World Health Organization (WHO). Available at: [Accessed June 2019]
  7. World Health Organization (WHO). Available at:  [Accessed June 2019]


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