Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Clin Microbiol. 2003 Jun;41(6):2509-14.

General acquisition of human papillomavirus infections of skin occurs in early infancy.

Author information

  • 1Department of Medical Microbiology, Malmö University Hospital, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden.


The human skin papillomaviruses (HPVs) represent a group of ubiquitous viruses detected at a high prevalence in the normal skin of healthy adults. In the present study, we analyzed skin swab samples from babies during their first days of life and from infants at various ages up to age 4 years. Specimens from their parents and, for the newborn babies, environmental samples were also investigated. HPV DNA was already detected on the day of birth in samples from 2 of the 16 babies, and 45% of the samples from the babies were positive for HPV in the days following birth. Seventy-seven percent of the skin samples collected from the mothers were HPV DNA positive. The prevalence of HPV DNA among children from the ages of 1 month to 4 years varied between 50 and 70%. The HPV DNA sequences detected revealed a great diversity of genotypes and putative genotypes. Among 115 samples from 38 infants and 31 parents and 7 environmental samples, a total of 73 HPV types or putative types were isolated. Of these, 26 putative HPV types have not been described before. Our data suggest that asymptomatic HPV infections of normal skin are acquired very early in infancy and are caused by a great multiplicity of HPV types.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk