Time trends in the prevalence of HPV in oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinomas in northern Spain (1990-2009).Int J Cancer 2014; 134(2):487-92IJ
Recent studies support an important role for human papillomavirus (HPV) in oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinomas (OPSCC), although the incidence varies widely depending on the geographic location and time period studied. The aim of this study was to determine the proportion of HPV in a large cohort of OPSCC in northern Spain in the years 1990-2009. Clinical records and paraffin embedded tumor specimens of 248 consecutive patients surgically treated for OPSCC (140 tonsillar and 108 base of tongue) between 1990 and 2009 were retrieved. OPSCC cases were histomorphologically evaluated, and protein expression of p16 and p53 was analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Detection of high-risk HPV DNA was performed by GP5+/6+-PCR and in situ hybridization (ISH). Thirty cases (12%) were positive for p16 immunostaining, of which eight (3.2% of the total series) were found positive for HPV type 16 by genotyping of GP5+6+-PCR products. All HPV GP5+/6+-PCR-positive tumors were p53-immunonegative, seven had a basaloid morphology and seven were also positive by HPV ISH. Presence of HPV correlated inversely with tobacco and alcohol consumption (p < 0.001), but not with age of onset of OPSCC. Overall survival was better in the HPV-positive group, although not statistically significant (p = 0.175). OPSCC patients in northern Spain demonstrated a low involvement of HPV, increasing (although not significantly, p = 0.120) from 1.8% in 1990-1999 to 6.1% of cases in 2000-2009.