Elevation of HPV-18 and HPV-16 DNA in the Plasma of Patients with Advanced Cervical Cancer


Objective: Cervical cancer (CC) is one of the main problems in women’s health in which the pathologicrole of the human papilloma virus, HPV, is undeniable. Molecular methods have shown viral DNA in affectedtissues, related to the disease progression. Patients and
Methods: We here studied 100 patients with abnormalPap test results. HPV DNA loads in the plasma samples were measured by quantitative real time PCR, usingspecific primers and probes for the E6 genes of HPV types 16, 18, 33 and 52. Another 50 women with no obviousmalignancy were enrolled as controls.
Results: Pathological studies revealed 81 patients with CC and 19 withcervical intraepithelial neoplasia. Only 19 of the cancer patients (15 with squamous cell carcinomas and 4 withadenocarcinomas) had detectable genetic material of HPV-16 (N=4) and HPV-18 (N=15) in their plasma; geneticmaterial of other types was absent. HPV DNA copies increased with advanced disease in both types. Significantlysmaller amounts of HPV DNA of types 16 and/or 18 were detected in the plasma of 16% of the controls whileother types were negative.
Conclusion: The evidence of HPV DNA of high risk types in the plasma of womenwith CCs strongly emphasizes the necessity of more longitudinal comprehensive studies to determine its role asa possible biomarker in cervical cancer.