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J Mich Dent Assoc. 2011 Sep;93(9):44-8.

The role of the human papillomavirus in oropharyngeal cancer.

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Department of Diagnostic Sciences, Baylor College of Dentistry-Texas A&M Health Science Center, Dallas, Texas, USA.


In recent years there has been an overall decrease in cancers of the oral cavity, and a concurrent increase in cancers in specific sites of the posterior oral cavity and oropharynx in the United States. There is increasing evidence that the human papillomavirus may play a role in the development of oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma. In this article we review the biology and risk factors associated with HPV and oropharyngeal carcinoma, and recent data suggesting that this type of cancer may be unique in its response to treatment and prognosis.

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