National Cancer Institute
Behavioral Research - Cancer Control and Population Sciences

Key Initiatives

Epidemiology Studies Regarding HPV and Cervical Cancer

Diet and Duration of Cervical HPV Infection

Investigator: Marc T. Goodman<

Epidemiological investigations have supported the role of diet and nutrition in the etiology of cervical SIL and cancer. Several studies have suggested that dietary and plasma carotenoids, tocopherols, vitamin C, and perhaps folate, may be inversely related to risk. Nutrients with anti-inflammatory or DNA repair properties may help protect cells from damage and reduce HPV persistence. Investigators propose to evaluate the relation of dietary and/or plasma concentrations of carotenoids, tocopherols, vitamin C, and B-complex vitamins in incident oncogenic HPV infection, oncogenic HPV persistence, and squamous intraepithelial lesions (SIL) of the cervix; examine the influence of local cervical cytokines, interleukin (IL)-la, IL-lp, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-a mRNA levels on the persistence of oncogenic HPV infection; and examine the joint association of dietary and immunological markers on the resolution of oncogenic HPV infections of the cervix.

Investigators will collect cervical specimens to detect cytokines released as part of the immune response, to detect C. trachomatis and HSV-2; and to conduct analyses of HPV DNA. They also will collect fasting blood samples for measurement of micronutrient levels and anal samples for future detection of HPV. Understanding the role of nutrition and inflammation in HPV persistence will provide information that will help in understanding patient reaction to HPV infection and response to HPV vaccines, and in the development of new therapies.

For more information contact NCI Program Director: Vaurice Starks

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Last Updated: January 5, 2012

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