Prognostic value of post-treatment HPV-specific antibodies in patients with oropharyngeal tumours


The presence of HPV-specific antibodies in patients with head and neck cancer at enrolment has prognostic significance. In cervical carcinoma patients, the decrease of HPV E6/E7-specific antibodies appears to be associated with a better prognosis. In this study, we analysed sera of 93 patients taken a year after the end of treatment and sera from 58 of these patients taken up to 14 years after treatment. HPV-specific antibodies in patients with oropharyngeal cancer reflect the tumour removal and their level declines with time from the treatment. The decline of HPV16 E7-specific antibodies is statistically steeper in non-recurrent in comparison to recurrent patients. However, since the decline occurs both in recurrent and non-recurrent patients these antibodies cannot be used as a marker for stratification of patients to the risk groups. While the presence of HPV-specific antibodies at enrolment is predictive of better survival, their level at enrolment is not. However, the changes in the level of HPV16 E6 antibodies on the one-year follow-up after the treatment predict better overall as well as disease-specific survival

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This paper was published in NARCIS .

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