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1 in 4 teen girls has STD

At least one in every four American teenage girls has a sexually transmitted disease, according to a major study released by the Centers for Disease Control, USA Today reported Tuesday.

A virus that causes cervical cancer is the most prevalent disease of the 3 million girls infected with an STD, the study found.

Nearly half of blacks and 20% of whites and Mexican-Americans have an STD.

About half of all girls ages 14-19 acknowledged having had sex, and of that half, nearly 40% had become infected.

A spokesperson for the CDC said this was the first study of its kind and will help doctors focus their research and educate girls who may be at risk.

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, the infection that can cause cervical cancer, can be prevented with a new vaccine.

Experts recommend that teenage girls receive the vaccine and get frequent examinations for other STDs.