Objective: We investigated coinfection patterns for 25 human papillomavirus (HPV) types and assessed the risk conferred by multiple HPV types toward cervical disease.
Methods: Sexually active women (n=5,871) in the NCI-sponsored Costa Rica HPV Vaccine Trial's prevaccination enrollment visit were analyzed. Genotyping for 25 HPVs was performed using SPF(10)/LiPA(25). We calculated odds ratios (ORs) to assess coinfection patterns for each genotype with 24 other genotypes. These ORs were pooled and compared with pair-specific ORs to identify genotype combinations that deviated from the pooled OR. We compared risk of CIN2+/HSIL+between multiple and single infections and assessed additive statistical interactions.
Results: Of the 2478 HPV-positive women, 1070 (43.2%) were infected with multiple types. Multiple infections occurred significantly more frequently than predicted by chance. However, this affinity to be involved in a coinfection (pooled OR for 300 type-type combinations=2.2; 95% confidence interval [CI]=2.1-2.4) was not different across HPV type-type combinations. Compared with single infections, coinfection with multiple α9 species was associated with significantly increased risk of CIN2+(OR=2.2; 95% CI=1.1-4.6) and HSIL+(OR=1.6; 95% CI=1.1-2.4). However, disease risk was similar to the sum of estimated risk from individual types, with little evidence for synergistic interactions.
Conclusions: Coinfecting HPV genotypes occur at random and lead to cervical disease independently.