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Diagn Mol Pathol. 2000 Sep;9(3):145-50.

Human papillomavirus detection by the hybrid capture II assay: a reliable test to select women with normal cervical smears at risk for developing cervical lesions.

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Cell Biology Unit, Laboratoire Pol Bouin, Reims, France.


The reliability of the Hybrid Capture II (HC-II; Digene, Silver Spring, MD, U.S.A.) assay was tested in detecting 18 human Papillomavirus (HPV) types for the screening of cervical lesions. Cytology, HPV testing, colposcopy, and biopsy were used to monitor 204 women with normal smears at the first entry. The median follow-up was 15 months (range, 4-27 months). The primary endpoint was clinical progression defined as the presence of a cervical intraepithelial lesion at the biopsy. In the patient population of 204 HPV-infected women, 81 (39.7%) had a persistent HPV infection at two or three examinations with a final histologic diagnosis of 14 high-grade and 13 low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (SIL) within 4 to 22 months. Women with regressive HPV infection did not develop any lesion during the same period. The evaluation of the viral load of high-risk HPV by the HC-II did not represent a sensitive approach to predict the persistence or the apparition of high-grade lesions. Thus, persistent high-risk HPV infection detected with HC-II represents a reliable tool to select populations at risk for the development of high-grade cervical lesions.

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