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Auris Nasus Larynx. 2009 Aug;36(4):450-6. doi: 10.1016/j.anl.2008.10.011. Epub 2009 Jan 4.

High-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) is not associated with p53 and bcl-2 expression in oral squamous cell carcinomas.

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Department of Oral Pathology of the State University of Feira de Santana, Feira de Santana, Bahia, Brazil.



To determine the frequency and type of human papillomavirus (HPV) in oral squamous cell carcinomas (OSCC), as well as to identify a possible association between HPV infection and the expression pattern of p53 and bcl-2, and identify whether the oral HPV infection is a characteristic finding in our sample.


We performed polymerase chain reaction and dot blot hybridization for the detection of HPV DNA in paraffin sections as well as immunohistochemical analysis of p53 and bcl-2 in our sample.


Twenty-six cases (29.5%) were positive for the virus by PCR. Dot blot hybridization identified HPV 18 in 21 (80.8%) cases, HPV 16 in one (3.8%) case and a combination of the two types in the four (15.4%) remaining cases. No other type of HPV was detected in the sample. Immunohistochemistry showed p53 in 26 (60.4%) cases and bcl-2 in 17 (39.5%) ones. No significant association was observed between the presence of HPV and the expression of the proteins studied (p=0.988 and p=0.748, respectively).


Although this investigation have detected only 29.5% of HR-HPV DNA in OSCC, it is possible that this virus contribute to the development of some case of this tumor. Furthermore, it seems that the immunohistochemical expression of p53 and bcl-2 and the presence of HPV DNA are independent events in OSCC.

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