Summary from an international cancer seminar focused on human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive oropharynx cancer, convened by scientists at IARC and NCI

Oral Oncol. 2020 Sep;108:104736. doi: 10.1016/j.oraloncology.2020.104736. Epub 2020 Jun 2.


Cancer of the oropharynx has attracted considerable attention in recent years given: (1) an increasing incidence in selected populations over the past three decades; (2) the discovery of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection as the driver of the increase, as opposed to the traditional risk factors such as tobacco (smoking and chewing) and alcohol; and (3) the promise of new prevention and treatment strategies. As a result of such developments, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and the US National Cancer Institute (NCI), convened the fourth Cancer Seminar meeting in November 2018 to focus on this topic. This report summarizes the proceedings: a review of recent science on the descriptive epidemiology, etiology, biology, genetics, early detection, pathology and treatment of HPV-positive oropharyngeal cancer, and the formulation of key research questions to be addressed.

Keywords: Etiology; Genetics; HPV; Oropharynx cancer; Prevention; Screening; Therapy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Conference
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • National Cancer Institute (U.S.)
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms / virology*
  • Papillomaviridae / growth & development*
  • Papillomavirus Infections / genetics*
  • United States