Humoral Immune Response Against Human Papillomavirus as Source of Biomarkers for the Prediction and Detection of Cervical Cancer.

Lourdes Gutierrez-Xicotencatl, Dolores Azucena Salazar-Piña, Adolfo Pedroza-Saavedra, Lilia Chihu-Amparan, Angelica Nallelhy Rodriguez-Ocampo, Minerva Maldonado-Gama, Fernando Roger Esquivel-Guadarrama,

Viral immunology, January 18, 2016

Cervical cancer (CC) is one of the main causes of death among women of reproductive age. Although there are different tests, the disease tends to be diagnosed at late stages. In recent years, the use of complementary tests or sequential diagnostic tests has been implemented. Nevertheless, the results are variable and not conclusive; therefore, more studies for improving the usefulness of these tests in diagnostics are necessary. The human papillomavirus (HPV) infection has been associated with both benign and malignant proliferation of skin and mucosal tissues. Furthermore, some HPV types have been classified as high risk due to their potential to cause cancer, and HPV16 is most frequently associated with this disease. Although between 70% and 80% of precancerous lesions are eliminated by the host’s immune system, there is no available test to distinguish between regressive lesions from those that could progress to CC. An HPV infection generates a humoral immune response against L1 and L2 capsid proteins, which can be protective and a response against early proteins. The latter is not a protective response, but these antibodies can be used as markers to determine the stage of the infection and/or the stage of the cervical lesion. Up to now, the humoral immune response resulting from the HPV infection has been used to study the biology of the virus and the efficacy of the HPV vaccines. Although there are no conclusive results regarding the use of these antibodies for diagnosis, we hereby review the actual panorama of the antibody response against the HPV proteins during the development of the disease as well as their possible use as biomarkers for the progression of cervical lesions and of CC.

Pubmed Link: 26780189