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High-risk human papilloma viruses (HPVs) were not detected in the benign skin lesions of a small number of children


D. A. Spandidos, Laboratory of Virology, School of Medicine, University of Crete, Crete, Greece.
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Aim: Human papilloma virus (HPV) can be transmitted via sexual as well as nonsexual routes. Recently, ‘high-risk’ HPVs were detected in the oral mucosa of children in whose cases there was no suspicion of sexual abuse. This implies that HPV 16 and 18 have additional nonsexual modes of transmission in childhood, such as vertical transmission and autoinoculation.

Methods: Using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays, we examined the skin tissues of 12 children with benign skin lesions, aged between 6 and 13 years, for the presence of HPV.

Results: Among 12 biopsy skin specimens, no ‘high-risk’ HPV DNA was detected. Specific PCRs for HPV DNA 16 and 18 were also negative.

Conclusion: This preliminary case-control study indicates the absence of mucosal ‘high-risk’ HPV types in the benign skin lesions of children.