Low methylation marker levels among human papillomavirus-vaccinated women with cervical high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions

Karolina Louvanto, Lisanne Verhoef, Ville Pimenoff, Tiina Eriksson, Siiri Leppälä, Camilla Lagheden, Penelope Gray, Dorota Scibior-Bentkowska, Elizabeth Sumiec, Pekka Nieminen, Joakim Dillner, Johannes Berkhof, Chris J.L.M. Meijer, Matti Lehtinen, Belinda Nedjai, Daniëlle A.M. Heideman

Tutkimustuotos: ArtikkeliScientificvertaisarvioitu

1 Lataukset (Pure)


Cervical cancer screening programs, including triage tests, need redesigning as human papillomavirus (HPV)-vaccinated women are entering the programs. Methylation markers offer a potential solution to reduce false-positive rates by identifying clinically relevant cervical lesions with progressive potential. In a nested case–control study, 9242 women who received the three-dose HPV16/18-vaccine at ages 12–15 or 18 in a community-randomized trial were included. Subsequently, they were re-randomized for either frequent or infrequent cervical cancer screening trials. Over a 15-year post-vaccination follow-up until 2022, 17 high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (HSIL) and 15 low-grade (LSIL) cases were identified at the 25-year screening round, alongside 371 age and community-matched HPV16/18-vaccinated controls. Methylation analyses were performed on cervical samples collected at age 25, preceding histologically confirmed LSIL or HSIL diagnoses. DNA methylation of viral (HPV16/18/31/33) and host-cell genes (EPB41L3, FAM19A4, and miR124-2) was measured, along with HPV-genotyping. No HPV16/18 HSIL cases were observed. The predominant HPV-genotypes were HPV52 (29.4%), HPV59/HPV51/HPV58 (each 23.5%), and HPV33 (17.7%). Methylation levels were generally low, with no significant differences in mean methylation levels of viral or host-cell genes between the LSIL/HSIL and controls. However, a significant difference in methylation levels was found between HSIL cases and controls when considering a combination of viral genes and EPB41L3 (p value =.0001). HPV-vaccinated women with HSIL had HPV infections with uncommon HPV types that very rarely cause cancer and displayed low methylation levels. Further investigation is warranted to understand the likely regressive nature of HSIL among HPV-vaccinated women and its implications for management.

JulkaisuInternational Journal of Cancer
DOI - pysyväislinkit
TilaE-pub ahead of print - 2024
OKM-julkaisutyyppiA1 Alkuperäisartikkeli tieteellisessä aikakauslehdessä


  • Jufo-taso 2

!!ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research
  • Reproductive Medicine


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