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Gynecol Oncol. 1994 May;53(2):190-5.

Human papillomavirus DNA in adenocarcinoma and adenosquamous carcinoma of the uterine cervix detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

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


Although human papillomaviruses (HPV) have been implicated strongly in the pathogenesis of squamous cell carcinomas of the uterine cervix, a few studies have suggested that HPV may be an etiological factor for adenocarcinoma of the cervix. To evaluate the association between HPV infection and cervical adenocarcinoma, we analyzed formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissues from 64 patients with adenocarcinoma or adenosquamous carcinoma of the uterine cervix for the presence of HPV DNA using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) with primers specific for the 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, and 35 types. HPV DNA was detected in 24 of 43 (56%) cases of adenocarcinoma, and in 19 of 21 (91%) cases of adenosquamous carcinoma. Fifteen of the 43 (35%) adenocarcinomas and 10 of the 21 (48%) adenosquamous carcinomas contained HPV 18 DNA, and 10 of the 43 (23%) adenocarcinomas and 11 of the 21 (52%) adenosquamous carcinomas contained HPV 16 DNA. One specimen was positive for HPV 31 and five contained HPV 35 DNA, all but one as double infections with HPV 18. No evidence of HPV 6, 11, or 33 DNA carriage was seen. These results suggest that human papillomaviruses, particularly HPV 16 and 18, play a role in the etiology of cervical adenocarcinoma and adenosquamous carcinoma.

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