Prevalence of high-risk human papilloma virus genotypes and associated risk of cervical precancerous lesions in a large U.S. screening population: data from the ATHENA trial

Gynecol Oncol. 2015 Apr;137(1):47-54. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2015.01.551. Epub 2015 Feb 8.


Objective: We assessed the age-related prevalence of high risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV) genotypes and the genotype-associated risk for high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) in a large U.S. screening population.

Methods: A total of 40,901 women aged ≥25 years were screened with liquid-based cytology and HPV testing in the ATHENA (Addressing the Need for Advanced HPV Diagnostics) trial. Genotyping was performed using the LINEAR ARRAY HPV Genotyping Test.

Results: HPV16 was the most prevalent genotype in all age groups, ranging from 3.5% to 0.8% in women aged 25-29 and ≥50 years, respectively. The next most prevalent genotypes were HPV52, HPV31 and HPV18. In the overall population, HPV16 conferred the greatest absolute risk of ≥CIN3 both in women aged 25-29 and ≥30 years (14.2% and 15.1%, respectively) followed by HPV31 (8.0% and 7.9%), HPV52 (6.7% and 4.4%) and HPV18 (2.7% and 9.0%). Similar trends were seen in women with negative cytology. The percent positivity increased markedly with disease progression for HPV16 and HPV18 which were responsible for 45.6% and 8.4% of ≥CIN3, respectively. Of note, HPV 18 was responsible for 50% of adenocarcinoma in situ (AIS) and 50% of invasive cancer cases.

Conclusions: HPV16 played a major role in the development of ≥CIN3 irrespective of age, supporting the identification of HPV16 in primary screening for all women. Identification of HPV18 is also warranted, given its significant contribution to AIS and cancer. Identification of non-16/18 genotypes as a pool should provide sufficient information for screening.

Trial registration: NCT00709891.

Keywords: Absolute risk≥CIN3; Cervical cancer screening; HPV genotyping; HPV prevalence; HPV testing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Alphapapillomavirus / classification*
  • Alphapapillomavirus / genetics
  • Alphapapillomavirus / isolation & purification
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Human papillomavirus 16 / genetics*
  • Human papillomavirus 16 / isolation & purification
  • Human papillomavirus 18 / genetics*
  • Human papillomavirus 18 / isolation & purification
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Papillomavirus Infections / epidemiology
  • Papillomavirus Infections / pathology
  • Papillomavirus Infections / virology*
  • Prevalence
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / epidemiology
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / pathology
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / virology*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / pathology
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / virology*

Associated data