Purpose: Countries of the former Yugoslavia bear some of the highest cervical cancer burden in Europe. In Bosnia and Herzegovina (B&H), data on human papillomavirus (HPV) genotype distribution among cervical cancer cases is scarce. This baseline information is critical in order to evaluate the impact of prophylactic HPV vaccines. This study aims to provide specific information for B&H.
Methods: The final analysis comprised 283 cases of invasive cervical cancer identified at the Polyclinic for Laboratory Diagnostic, University Clinical Center Tuzla in B&H between 1984 and 2004. HPV was detected through amplification of HPV DNA using SPF-10 broad spectrum primers followed by deoxyribonucleic acid enzyme inmunoassay and genotyping by reverse line probe assay (LiPA(25), version 1).
Results: Most cases (92.2%) were histologically classified as squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). A total of 268 cases (94.7%) were positive for HPV. Infections were mainly present as single (95.5%) and HPV16 and 18 accounted for 77.8% of the positive cases. The next most common HPV types were HPV45 (4.4%), HPV33 (3.1%), HPV51 (2.3%) and HPV31 (2.2%). The mean age of cases infected with the seven most common types worldwide (HPV16/18/45/31/33/52/58) was 51.1 (SD=11.6), six years younger than the one for cases infected with other types (56.3, SD=12.9).
Conclusions: Available HPV vaccines could potentially prevent 77.8% of Bosnian cervical cancer cases (i.e. those associated with HPV16/18). If the reported magnitude of the cross-protection of licensed vaccines for non-vaccine HPV types is long lasting, an additional 6 to 10% of cases could be prevented.
Keywords: Bosnia and Herzegovina; Cervical cancer; HPV types; Vaccines.
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