Age Determines HPV Persistence in Men

The study, published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research found that HPV persisted for 12 months or more in men older than 45 years of age, which could increase their susceptibility to developing head and neck cancer.

Oral infection with human papillomavirus 16 (HPV16), which is the type of HPV most frequently linked to HPV-driven head and neck cancers, was more likely to persist 12 or more months in men older than 45 than in those younger than 45, according to a study published in Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

“Oral HPV16 is the HPV type most commonly found in HPV-driven oropharyngeal cancers, which have been increasing in incidence recently in the United States,” said Christine M. Pierce Campbell, PhD, MPH, an assistant member in the Department of Cancer Epidemiology and Center for Infection Research in Cancer at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida. “We don’t know how long oral HPV infection must persist to increase risk for head and neck cancer, but we assume it would be similar to cervical infection, where it is generally believed that infections persisting beyond two years greatly increase the risk of developing cervical cancer.

Link to the press release by AACR: