Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection might be one of the potential risk factors for esophageal cancer.
However, the previous epidemiological findings were heterogeneous.
Professors Gao and Jin explored the association between HPV infection and esophageal cancer risk by means of meta-analysis.
Studies on HPV infection and esophageal cancer were identified, the prevalence of HPV infection and its association with esophageal cancer risk were quantitatively summarized by meta-analysis.
The researchers evaluated a total of 8990 esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) patients, and 174 esophageal adenocarcinomas patients from 76 included studies.
|Summarized HPV prevalence in esophageal SCC was 22%|
|Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics|
The team observed that summarized HPV prevalence in esophageal SCC was 22%, HPV-16 was the most frequently observed subtype with a summarized prevalence of 11%.
With respect to esophageal adenocarcinoma, HPV prevalence was 35%, and HPV-16 prevalence was 11%.
Due to the limited number of included studies on esophageal adenocarcinoma, association analyses were performed to esophageal squamous cell carcinoma only.
The research team observed significant association between HPV infection and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma with a summarized odds ratio of 3.3.
The team found that according to HPV-16, the strength of the association was 3.5.
Professors Gao and colleagues conclude, "Human papillomavirus infection was observed to be associated with an increased risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma in this meta-analysis."
"However, due to the evident heterogeneity observed between the included studies and the strength of the association not as strong as observed for cervical cancer and laryngeal cancer, further studies are needed to clarify the relation and its underlying mechanisms."