Some types of papilloma virus might prevent cervical cancer

April 10, 2013

(Medical Xpress)—Certain types of papilloma virus might actually prevent cervical cancer, according to a new study by researchers from The University of Manchester.

There are over 100 different types of (HPV). is known to be caused by infection with approximately 14 so-called "high-risk" types of this virus. Researchers from Manchester looked at the different types of HPV found in cervical smears and invasive cervical cancers from HIV positive and HIV negative in Kenya. They found high numbers of a specific type of HPV (type 53) in normal cervical smears from HIV positive women, but this was rarely found in HIV negative women. This sub-type was also never found in cervical cancers from either HIV positive or negative women.

Dr Ian Hampson, a Senior Lecturer in Viral Oncology from The University of Manchester who lead the study, said: "It is well known that HIV increases the number of different types of HPV found in any one patient which implies that HIV opens the door for infection with multiple types of HPV. If only high-risk types are present these will undoubtedly accelerate progression to cancer whereas if other types (eg type 53) are also present they may actually compete with the high-risk types to inhibit progression to cervical cancer."

There are 270,000 deaths from cervical cancer globally each year with 85% of these occurring in countries with low resources. In Kenya it is the most common accounting for between 18 and 23 per cent of all diagnosed cases of cancer.

The study looked at women at samples taken from women in Kenya and results were analysed at The University of Manchester's Viral Oncology Laboratories based at the Saint Mary's Hospital. Completed by Dr Ian Hampson, Dr Lynne Hampson and Dr Innocent Orora Maranga the results have been published in The Open Virology Journal.

Dr Hampson said the study suggested one possible explanation for why, in spite of a large increase in the numbers of in HIV positive African women, there was not a corresponding increase in numbers of cases of cervical cancer. This could also explain why another African study had actually shown the risk of developing one specific type of cervical cancer actually dropped in HIV-positive women, he said.

The researchers now plan to do more research in this area. "Our study was quite small and more research with larger sample numbers is now needed," Dr Hampson said. "We also need to work out exactly how one type of HPV might suppress the cancer causing properties of another. If it can be proved that HPV type 53 can inhibit the cancer-causing properties of other high-risk types of HPV, this could potentially form the basis of a simple biological therapy to prevent this disease. This could be extremely useful in low resource countries who cannot afford expensive HPV vaccines."

Explore further: HIV drug could prevent cervical cancer

More information: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3594704/

Related Stories

HIV drug could prevent cervical cancer

May 3, 2011
A widely used HIV drug could be used to prevent cervical cancer caused by infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV), say scientists.

Current HPV vaccine may not help some women with immune problems

April 7, 2013
Women with HIV acquire cancer-causing forms of the human papillomavirus (HPV) that are not included in the current HPV vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix, according to new research from Fox Chase Cancer Center being presented ...

Most anal lesions don't cause cancer in men, research shows

March 23, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Anal human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and precancerous lesions are common among gay and bisexual men, but most of these cases will not progress to anal cancer, a new analysis of earlier research shows.

No evidence for potential competition between human papillomavirus types in men

November 14, 2011
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recently recommended that teenage boys be vaccinated against the human papillomavirus.

Cervical vaccine also protects against anal cancer risk

August 23, 2011
A vaccine routinely used to shield against cervical cancer caused by the human papillomavirus also reduces women's risk of anal cancer, a study published by the journal The Lancet Oncology on Tuesday says.

Screening for HPV persistence and cervical cancer risk

September 6, 2011
Women over the age of thirty who test positive for HPV (Human Papillomavirus) should be re-tested two years later as part of cervical cancer screening, according to a study published online TK in the Journal of the National ...

Recommended for you

Outdoor light at night linked with increased breast cancer risk in women

August 17, 2017
Women who live in areas with higher levels of outdoor light at night may be at higher risk for breast cancer than those living in areas with lower levels, according to a large long-term study from Harvard T.H. Chan School ...

Scientists develop novel immunotherapy technology for prostate cancer

August 17, 2017
A study led by scientists at The Wistar Institute describes a novel immunotherapeutic strategy for the treatment of cancer based on the use of synthetic DNA to directly encode protective antibodies against a cancer specific ...

Scientists develop blood test that spots tumor-derived DNA in people with early-stage cancers

August 16, 2017
In a bid to detect cancers early and in a noninvasive way, scientists at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center report they have developed a test that spots tiny amounts of cancer-specific DNA in blood and have used it to ...

Toxic formaldehyde is produced inside our own cells, scientists discover

August 16, 2017
New research has revealed that some of the toxin formaldehyde in our bodies does not come from our environment - it is a by-product of an essential reaction inside our own cells. This could provide new targets for developing ...

Cell cycle-blocking drugs can shrink tumors by enlisting immune system in attack on cancer

August 16, 2017
In the brief time that drugs known as CDK4/6 inhibitors have been approved for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer, doctors have made a startling observation: in certain patients, the drugs—designed to halt cancer ...

Researchers find 'switch' that turns on immune cells' tumor-killing ability

August 16, 2017
Molecular biologists led by Leonid Pobezinsky and his wife and research collaborator Elena Pobezinskaya at the University of Massachusetts Amherst have published results that for the first time show how a microRNA molecule ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.