Approximately one third of the known 120 types of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) can infect the anogenital region. Infection with high-risk HPV types is the main causal factor in cervical cancer etiology, and HPV infections have also been associated with lesions of the anus, penis, vulva, and upper aero-digestive tract. Among HIV-infected individuals, the prevalences of HPV infection in the oral, penile, and anal regions have been reported to be higher compared to the general population. Additionally, HIV-infected individuals have been shown to be more likely to be infected with a high-risk HPV type and with multiple HPV types, compared to HIV-negative individuals. Partly attributable to these reasons, HIV-positive individuals have higher risks for anal, oral, and penile cancers .
A few older studies have evaluated the effects of Interferon-alpha (IFN-Î±) treatment on HPV infection and HPV-related dysplasia. Findings from these studies were mixed, but most results were based on the use of standard IFN-Î± therapy and thus, may not be generalizable to the more recent formulations of IFN-Î± that are now used to treat Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. The purpose of this small pilot study was to assess whether treatment for HCV by pegylated, rather than standard, IFN-Î± was associated with the presence of or distribution of the types of HPV found in the oral, penile, and anal regions of HIV and HCV co-infected men. By examining a small number of high-risk individuals, this study provided further rationale for exploring the possible utility of pegylated IFN-Î± for prevention of HPV-related disease in high-risk populations.
Last date updated on September, 2014