Presence of human papilloma virus type 16 DNA sequences in human nonmelanoma skin cancers

William E. Pierceall, Leonard H. Goldberg, Honnavara N. Ananthaswamy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


The presence of human papillomaviruses (HPV) has been shown to be associated with the development and progression of invasive cancers of the genital tract, skin, and head and neck. In this study we analyzed 37 human nonmelanoma skin cancers (21 squamous cell carcinomas and 16 basal cell carcinomas) for the presence of HPV sequences. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was employed using primers designed to amplify DNA encoding the E6-E7 region of HPV types 6b/11, 16, and 18. HPV type 6b/11 and 18 sequences were absent from the DNA of all 37 tumors examined. However, HPV type 16 sequences were detected in four of 21 squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) (19%) and three of 16 basal cell carcinomas (BCC) (19%) as indicated on agarose gel electrophoresis by the presence of a single specific DNA band of predicted length. Furthermore, HPV type 16 sequences were absent in the DNA of normal skin from these seven skin cancer patients. The presence of HPV type 16 sequences in the seven skin tumors was confirmed by dot blot hybridization of PCR-amplified material to 32P-labeled HPV type 16, but not to HPV type 6/11 or 18-specific probes. These data indicate that HPV type 16, but not 6b/11 or 18, is associated with development of some human nonmelanoma skin cancers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)880-884
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Dermatology
  • Cell Biology


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