Author(s): Silver MI, Paul P, Sowjanya P, Ramakrishna G, Vedantham H,
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Abstract We found a large number of false-positive readings by visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA) in a study of cervical cancer screening strategies (VIA, human papillomavirus HPV DNA testing, and Pap cytology) in a periurban community in Andhra Pradesh, India. We evaluated whether these false-positive readings might be occurring as a result of infections with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) or cytomegalovirus (CMV), prevalent latent herpesviruses known to be shed from the female genital tract. While we found that there was no association between VIA results and the presence of EBV or CMV in the cervix, we did find a high prevalence of both viruses: 20\% for EBV and 26\% for CMV. In multivariate analyses, CMV prevalence was associated with younger age, lack of running water in the home, and visually apparent cervical inflammation. EBV prevalence was associated with older age and a diagnosis of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 1 or greater. The biological and clinical implications of these viruses at the cervix remain to be determined. The strong association between the presence of EBV and cervical disease warrants future exploration to determine whether EBV plays a causal role in disease development or if it is merely a bystander in the process.
This article was published in J Clin Microbiol
and referenced in Virology & Mycology