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Epidemiol Health. 2015 Nov 17;37:e2015052. doi: 10.4178/epih/e2015052. eCollection 2015.

Human papillomavirus infection and risk of lung cancer in never-smokers and women: an 'adaptive' meta-analysis.

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Department of Preventive Medicine, Jeju National University School of Medicine, Jeju, Korea.



The incidence of lung cancer in Koreans is increasing in women and in both men and women with a never-smoking history. Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection has been suggested as a modifiable risk factor of lung cancer in never-smokers and women (LCNSW). This systematic review (SR) aimed to evaluate an association between HPV infection and lung cancer risk in LCNSW.


Based on a prior SR and some expert reviews, we identified refereed, cited, or related articles using the PubMed and Scopus databases. All case-control studies that reported the odds ratio of HPV infection in LCNSW were selected. An estimate of the summary odds ratio (SOR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) was calculated.


A total of four case-control studies were included. The fixed-effect model was applied because of homogeneity (I-squared=0.0%). The SORs in women and in never-smokers were 5.32 (95% CI, 1.75 to 16.17) and 4.78 (2.25 to 10.15) respectively.


These results showed a significant effect of HPV infection in LCNSW. It is evident that developing a preventive plan against LCNSW may be necessary.


Human papillomavirus; Lung neoplasms; Meta-analysis; Risk factor

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