Share this article on:

The Prevalence of Human Papillomavirus in Ovarian Cancer: A Systematic Review

Rosa, Maria Inês MD, PhD; Silva, Geraldo Doneda MD; de Azedo Simões, Priscyla Waleska Targino MD; Souza, Meriene Viquetti MD; Panatto, Ana Paula Ronzani; Simon, Carla Sasso; Madeira, Kristian MD; Medeiros, Lidia Rossi MD, PhD

International Journal of Gynecological Cancer: March 2013 - Volume 23 - Issue 3 - p 437–441
doi: 10.1097/IGC.0b013e318280f3e0
Ovarian Cancer

Objective We performed a systematic review and a meta-analysis to estimate the prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) in ovarian cancer.

Methods A comprehensive search of the Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, CANCERLIT, LILACS, Grey literature and EMBASE was performed for articles published from January 1990 to March 2012. The following MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) terms were searched: “ovarian tumor” or “ovarian cancers” and “HPV” or “human papillomavirus.” Included were case-control and cross-sectional studies, prospective or retrospective, that evaluated clinical ovarian cancer and provided a clear description of the use of in situ hybridization, Southern blot hybridization, and polymerase chain reaction. The statistical analysis was performed using REVMAN 5.0.

Results In total, 24 primary studies were included in this meta-analysis. Studies from 11 countries on 3 continents contained data on HPV and ovarian cancer, including 889 subjects. Overall, the HPV prevalence in patients with ovarian cancer was 17.5 (95% confidence interval [CI], 15.0%–20.0%). Human papillomavirus prevalence ranged from 4.0% (95% CI, 1.7%–6.3%) in Europe to 31.4% (95% CI, 26.9%–35.9%) in Asia. An aggregate of 4 case-control studies from Asia showed an odds ratio of 2.48 (95% CI, 0.64–9.57).

Conclusions We found a high prevalence of HPV-positive DNA in ovarian cancer cases, but the role of HPV in ovarian cancer remains inconclusive. Further studies are needed to control case to answer this question.

Laboratory of Epidemiology and National Institute for Translational Medicine of University of Extremo Sul Catarinense, Criciúma, Santa Catarina, Brazil.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Maria Inês da Rosa, MD, PhD, Rua Cruz e Souza, 510, Bairro Pio Correa, CEP 88811-550, Criciúma, Santa Catarina, Brazil. E-mail:

Financial support was received from the University of Southern Santa Catarina.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Received October 26, 2012

Accepted December 2, 2012

Copyright © 2013 by IGCS and ESGO