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Eur J Intern Med. 2012 Mar;23(2):e59-62. doi: 10.1016/j.ejim.2011.06.011. Epub 2011 Nov 12.

Human papillomavirus detected in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma in Iran.

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Tehran University of Medical Sciences, The Cancer Research Center, Tehran, Iran.



Considering the different results obtained regarding the association of HPV with the development of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) in different populations, we aimed to determine the frequency of HPV infection and its subtypes in ESCC in Iranian patients.


A total of 100 paraffin-embedded tissue samples of ESCC diagnosed during 1991 and 2005 in the Institute of Cancer affiliated to Tehran University of Medical Sciences were selected. Seven out of 100 samples were excluded due to low quality of extracted DNA from paraffin-embedded specimens. Thus, 93 samples were included for HPV genotyping.


All samples were examined using SPF10 primers for HPV detection. HPV DNA was positive in 8 out of 93 (8.6%) ESCC specimens. Using INNO-LiPA genotyping system we detected the genotypes of 5 out of 8 HPV-positive samples. Both HPV types 16 and 6 were detected in 3 specimens; one sample was positive for HPV type 18 and 2 samples were co-infected with two HPV types. There were no statistically significant differences between HPV-positive and HPV-negative cases with regard to clinical and pathologic findings. Three samples were positive for SPF10 indicating HPV infection; however, the exact HPV type could not be clarified using INNO-LiPA genotyping .


In conclusion, the present study showed that a small proportion of ESCC specimens from Iran harbor HPV16, 18 genome using a highly sensitive method. As different rates have been reported from Iran, a more widespread study with more precise definition of geographical differences could delineate the potential involvement of HPV in the development of ESCC in Iranian population.

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