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Transpl Int. 2003 Mar;16(3):146-53. Epub 2003 Feb 6.

Association of human papillomavirus infections with cutaneous tumors in immunosuppressed patients.

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Institute of Immunology, Clinical Pathology and Molecular Medicine, Lademannbogen 61, 22339, Hamburg, Germany.


Besides immunosuppression and UV radiation, human papillomavirus (HPV) infection was also suggested to be involved in the development of non-melanoma skin cancer, the most common malignancy after transplantation. In this study we used a comprehensive PCR assay to analyze the prevalence of individual HPV types in different skin lesions from transplant and non-transplant patients. HPV DNA was detected more frequently in squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) of transplant recipients (75%) than the same lesion was in non-immunosuppressed patients (47%). Similar HPV prevalences were found in cutaneous warts (91% vs 94%), pre-malignant skin tumors (38% vs 36%), and normal skin specimens (17% vs 16%) of both patient populations. Overall, more than 40 different HPV types were identified. HPV types 5 and 8 were found more frequently in SCCs (26%) than in pre-cancerous (5%) or benign lesions (1%). All HPV 5- and HPV 8-positive SCCs were from immunosuppressed patients, indicating that infection with HPV 5 and HPV 8 may present an increased risk of SCC development in these patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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