Aim: To investigate the relationship between human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and concurrent esophagus and gastric cardia cancer from the same patient (CC) and examine the significance of P16(INK4A) protein expression.
Methods: Polymerase chain reaction was used to detect the presence of HPV type16 (HPV16). The expression of P16(INK4A) protein was detected using immunohistochemistry.
Results: Among the CC specimens, HPV16-DNA was found in eight cases of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and five cases of gastric cardia adenocarcinoma (GCA), respectively (47% vs 29%), and two of both ESCC and GCA. P16(INK4A) was highly expressed in both ESCC and GCA. In the HPV-associated positive CC, higher P16(INK4A) expression was observed in the GCA than in the ESCC (75% vs 25%, P < 0.05).
Conclusion: HPV16 as a correlated risk factor may play an important role in the development of ESCC and GCA. P16(INK4A) may be a screening index in the HPV-associated carcinoma of gastric cardia.