Prognostic and Predictive Clinical and Biological Factors in HPV Malignancies

Semin Radiat Oncol. 2021 Oct;31(4):309-323. doi: 10.1016/j.semradonc.2021.03.008.


Human papillomavirus (HPV) causes the majority of oropharyngeal, cervical, and anal cancers, among others. These HPV-associated cancers cause substantial morbidity and mortality despite ongoing vaccination efforts. Aside from the earliest stage tumors, chemoradiation is used to treat most HPV-associated cancers across disease sites. Response rates are variable, and opportunities to improve oncologic control and reduce toxicity remain. HPV malignancies share multiple commonalities in oncogenesis and tumor biology that may inform personalized methods of screening, diagnosis, treatment and surveillance. In this review we discuss the current literature and identify promising molecular targets, prognostic and predictive clinical factors and biomarkers in HPV-associated oropharyngeal, cervical and anal cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alphapapillomavirus*
  • Anus Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Biological Factors
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Papillomaviridae
  • Papillomavirus Infections* / complications
  • Prognosis
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms*


  • Biological Factors