Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

No increased risk of infection for long-term sex partners of people with HPV-related oral cancers, study suggests

Date:
June 1, 2013
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medicine
Summary:
Spouses and long-term partners of patients with mouth and throat cancers related to infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV) appear to have no increased prevalence of oral HPV infections, according to new results.

Spouses and long-term partners of patients with mouth and throat cancers related to infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV) appear to have no increased prevalence of oral HPV infections, according to results of a multicenter, pilot study led by Johns Hopkins investigators. The study’s results suggest that long-term couples need not change their sexual practices, say the scientists.

“While we can’t guarantee that the partners of patients will not develop oral HPV infections or cancers, we can reassure them that our study found they had no increased prevalence of oral infections, which suggests their risk of HPV-related oral cancer remains low,” says Gypsyamber D’Souza, Ph.D., M.P.H., associate professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is expected to present the results of her study June 1 at the 2013 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting.

HPV-related oral cancers are rising in prevalence among white men in the United States, and fear of transmitting the virus can lead to anxiety, divorce, and curtailing of sex and intimacy among couples, says D’Souza. Persistent oral HPV infections are a risk for developing oropharyngeal cancers, located at the base of the tongue, tonsils, pharynx and soft palate.

At the Johns Hopkins Hospital and three other hospitals, researchers conducted surveys and took oral rinse samples from 166 male and female patients with HPV-related oropharyngeal cancers and 94 spouses and partners. The scientists also studied patients’ tumor samples and performed visual oral examinations of spouses/partners. Of the 94 spouses/partners, six were male.

More than half of patients had at least one type of HPV DNA detectable in their oral rinses, including HPV16, the viral type most commonly associated with oral and other cancers. After a year, only seven patients (six percent) still had oral HPV16 DNA detectable.

Of the 94 spouses/partners, six had oral HPV infections (6.5 percent). Among the six, none of the men and two of four females (2.3 percent) had HPV16 infections at very low levels. These infections were not detectable one year later. No oral cancers were detected among 60 spouses/partners who underwent a visual oral exam.

One spouse and one patient reported a history of cervical cancer. Two spouses reported a history of cervical pre-cancer, and three patients said they had previous spouses with cervical cancers, but these were self-reported, unconfirmed cases.

“The oral HPV prevalence among partners who participated in this study are comparable to rates observed among the general population,” says D’Souza. “We suspect that long-term spouses and partners have been exposed to HPV, like most of us, and appear to have cleared the virus.”

D’Souza and her colleagues recommend that long-term couples need not change their sexual practices. “Certainly, with new sexual partners, caution is always advised.”

More research is needed to determine the timeline of progression for HPV-related oral cancers and how HPV is transmitted and suppressed by the immune system, adds D’Souza.

Funding for the study was provided by the Johns Hopkins Innovation Fund and the Richard Gelb Cancer Prevention Award.

Scientists contributing to the research include Neil Gross from the Oregon Health & Science University; Maura Gillison from the Ohio State University; Sara Pai from Johns Hopkins; Robert Haddad from the Dana Farber Cancer Center; and Marshall Posner from Mount Sinai Medical Center.

ASCO Abstract #6031: Oral HPV infection in HPV-positive oropharyngeal cancer cases and their spouses.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medicine. "No increased risk of infection for long-term sex partners of people with HPV-related oral cancers, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130601133643.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medicine. (2013, June 1). No increased risk of infection for long-term sex partners of people with HPV-related oral cancers, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130601133643.htm
Johns Hopkins Medicine. "No increased risk of infection for long-term sex partners of people with HPV-related oral cancers, study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130601133643.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Center for Science in the Public Interest released its 2014 list of single meals with whopping calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins