National Cancer Institute
Behavioral Research - Cancer Control and Population Sciences

Key Initiatives

Epidemiology Studies Regarding HPV and Cervical Cancer

HPV and Cervix Neoplasia in a Large, Long-Term HIV+ Cohort

Investigator: Howard D. Strickle

Human papillomavirus (HPV) causes invasive cervical cancer in women and also causes penile cancer in men. Because men transmit HPV to their female partners, reducing HPV infection in men could be an important next step HPV prevention strategy that benefits both men and women. By decreasing the viral load of HPV infection in men this could reduce male-to-female HPV transmission, and thus ultimately reduce HPV prevalence and associated neoplasia in women.

Due to limited data suggesting that male circumcision may reduce HPV infection in men, the principal investigators proposes to study the effects of male circumcision on the risk and progression of penile HPV infection in young, sexually active men in Kiumu, Kenya. This study is part of an ongoing effort to assess the effect of male circumcision on HIV infection. Approximately 2,442 men will be enrolled in the study. The project will determine the prevalence of specific types of HPV DNA in penile cell samples. The investigators will test the specimens using polymerase chain reaction to detect a wide range of HPV DNA types. They also will determine HPV viral load for samples positive for HPV types 16, 18, 31, 33, and 45. The men also will be given a clinical exam at the 24 month final visit to check for penile lesions. This study will provide the most definitive evidence to date regarding the effect of male circumcision on HPV infection and penile lesions in men. Complementary studies are needed in men in order to better understand heterosexual HPV transmission in women.

For more information contact NCI Program Director: Vaurice Starks


Last Updated: January 5, 2012

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