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HPV Assessment in Oropharynx Cancer: What is the Gold Standard?

  • Panagiota Economopoulou
  • Ioannis Kotsantis
  • Amanda Psyrri
Chapter

Abstract

During recent years, evidence of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection emerged as a major prognostic biomarker in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCCs), especially those arising from the oropharynx. HPV-associated oropharyngeal carcinomas (OSCCs) represent a clinically distinct form of HNSCC with a different clinical profile, prognosis, and therapeutic options than HPV-non-related HNSCC. Most importantly, the accurate diagnosis of HPV causality in OSCCs is likely to influence therapeutic decisions in affected patients in the near future. Indeed, the clinical significance of detecting HPV in HNSCC has resulted in a growing expectation for HPV testing of HNSCCs. Many different HPV tests exist and much more information about their specific technical, analytical, and clinical properties are available. The objective of this chapter is to address the current state of HPV detection, explain various techniques of HPV detection and analyze the strengths and weaknesses of some of the more commonly used assays. As no single test has been universally accepted as a best method, the challenge for the oncologic community is to implement standardized HPV testing using a method that is highly accurate, technically feasible, cost effective, and readily transferrable to the diagnostic pathology laboratory. Furthermore, in this chapter we will discuss the role of HPV in OSCC and the clinical impact of HPV status as a biomarker for HNSCC.

Keywords

HPV Oropharyngeal cancer Detection methods PCR p16 immunostaining ISH E6 E7 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Panagiota Economopoulou
    • 1
  • Ioannis Kotsantis
    • 1
  • Amanda Psyrri
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine, Section of Medical OncologyAttikon University Hospital, National Kapodistrian University of Athens, School of MedicineAthensGreece

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