HPV and intraepithelial neoplasia recurrent lesions of the lower genital tract: assessment of the immune system

Eur J Gynaecol Oncol. 1998;19(5):466-9.


Objective: To evaluate the immune state in patients with genital relapse HPV and intraepithelial lesions of the lower genital tract.

Method: Forty-three patients were selected. Twenty-one were affected by recurrent HPV infection either alone or combined with intraepithelial neoplasia treated by laser surgery, and 22 had been previously-treated and clinically cured without recurrence during a follow-up from 18 to 24 months. The diagnostic protocol included colposcopy with eso- and endocervical cytology histologically confirmed by directed biopsy. Afterwards patients underwent a systemic immunogenic evaluation.

Results: NK cell reduction was strictly related to HPV infection associated with intraepithelial lesions; B-lymphocyte reduction was percentually greater in patients affected by HPV alone; activation of R-IL2 increased in a percentage overlapping in the two groups indicating patient reaction to the virus.

Conclusion: Our study supports the theory that immune response directed against viral antigens is one of the most important effectors in the control of HPV infections and that HPV is the cause of a systemic rather than local lesion.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • CD4-CD8 Ratio
  • CD8 Antigens / analysis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-2 / analysis
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology
  • Lymphocyte Count
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / diagnosis
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / immunology*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / therapy
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / immunology*
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / pathology
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / surgery
  • Papillomaviridae / immunology*
  • Papillomavirus Infections / diagnosis
  • Papillomavirus Infections / immunology*
  • Papillomavirus Infections / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Tumor Virus Infections / diagnosis
  • Tumor Virus Infections / immunology*
  • Tumor Virus Infections / therapy
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / immunology*
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / pathology
  • Uterine Cervical Dysplasia / surgery


  • CD8 Antigens
  • Interleukin-2