Objective: Human papilloma virus (HPV) is frequently detectable in cancers
of the cervix, vagina, and vulva, but its role in endometrial and ovarian c
ancers is less certain. This analysis aimed to examine the association of p
resence of HPV type 16 (HPV-16) antibodies with subsequent risk of cervical
, endometrial, and ovarian cancers.
Methods: In a prospective study enrolling over 15,000 pregnant women, pre-c
ancer sera from women who developed cervical (n = 83), endometrial (n = 34)
, and ovarian (n = 35) cancers were compared with sera from 172 control wom
en frequency-matched by age group and race.
Results: HPV-16 seropositivity (OR = 2.0, 95% CI 1.0-3.4) was associated wi
th cervical cancer, with the association more prominent for cancers occurri
ng within 10 years of serum sampling (OR = 2.3, 95% CI 1.0-5.3) than cancer
s occurring later (OR = 1.6, 95% CI 0.75-3.6). Overall, the associations be
tween HPV-16 seropositivity and endometrial (OR = 1.6, 95% CI 0.64-3.8) and
ovarian cancers (OR = 1.1, 95% CI 0.43-2.8) were not significant, although
the odds ratios for those cancers occurring within 20 years after serum sa
mpling were similar to that for cervical cancer (OR = 2.2 for both).
Conclusions: Our results confirm that HPV-16 infection precedes the develop
ment of cervical cancer. Predictability of HPV-16 seropositivity for risk o
f other female cancers warrants further investigation.