Association between poor prognosis in early-stage invasive cervical carcinomas and non-detection of HPV DNA

Lancet. 1990 May 19;335(8699):1171-4. doi: 10.1016/0140-6736(90)92693-c.


Human papilloma virus (HPV) DNA sequences (HPV types 16, 18, 33, 35 or uncharacterized) were detected by Southern blot hybridisation and polymerase chain reaction in 84% of 106 early-stage invasive carcinomas of the uterine cervix. Among HPV-positive patients, the risk of overall relapse did not differ with individual HPV types. Compared with HPV-positive patients, those with no detectable HPV DNA had a 2.6 times higher risk of overall relapse (p less than 0.05) and 4.5 times higher risk of distant metastases (p less than 0.01). The 24-month relapse-free survival rate in HPV-positive patients was significantly higher than that in HPV-negative patients (77% vs 40%), and the difference was similar (91% vs 56%) among those who were node-negative. These data indicate that HPV-negative cervical carcinomas may represent a biologically distinct subset of tumours that carry a poorer prognosis than do HPV-positive cancers.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / analysis*
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / analysis*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / pathology
  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Viral / analysis*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / analysis*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / pathology
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Papillomaviridae / classification
  • Papillomaviridae / genetics*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Factors
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / analysis*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / pathology


  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Viral