GEN Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (11.08.12)
Aids Weekly Plus
Researchers found that more than 45 percent of women with HIV may never have been exposed to the most common high-risk forms of the human papillomavirus (HPV). This means that many of these young women can benefit from the HPV vaccine, even if they have already been exposed to HPV.
Jessica Kahn, M.D., of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, and colleagues analyzed blood and tissue samples from 99 HIV-infected women aged 16 to 23 years, who had received the initial HPV vaccine. They examined the specimens for evidence of existing HPV infection and previous exposure to HPV. The researchers also tested for the presence of 41 of the more than 100 types of HPV—including 13 high-risk types.
Results show that 75 percent of the women had an existing HPV infection with at least one type of HPV virus and 54 percent tested positive for a high-risk type. Nearly half of the women had no existing infection with the two types (HPV-16 and HPV-18) that cause 70 percent of cervical cancers and showed no evidence of exposure to them. When the women received their first HPV vaccination, 12 percent had an existing HPV-16 infection, and 5 percent had an HPV-18 infection. When tested for HPV 16-and HPV-18 individually, nearly 75 percent of women had no current HPV-18 infection and no evidence of exposure. More than half (56 percent) had no current infection or previous exposure to HPV-16. The full report, “Prevalence and Risk Factors for HPV in HIV-Positive Young Women Receiving Their First HPV Vaccination,” was published in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (2012; 61(3):390–399).