Document Type



Population Health (East Africa)


Background: Women living with HIV are at increased risk to be co-infected with HPV, persistent high-risk (HR) human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and increased HR HPV viral load, which make them more at risk for cervical cancer. Despite their inherent vulnerability, there is a scarcity of data on potential high risk (pHR) and HR HPV genotypes in HIV- infected women with cervical dysplasia and HPV-type specific viral load in this population in Sub Saharan Africa. The aim of this analysis of HIV-infected women was to explore the virological correlates of high-grade cervical dysplasia (CIN 2+) in HIV-infected women, thereby profiling HPV genotypes.

Method: This analysis assesses baseline data obtained from a cohort study of 74 HIV-infected women with abnormal cytology attending a Comprehensive Care Centre for patients with HIV infection in Mombasa, Kenya. Quantitative real-time PCR was used for HPV typing and viral load.

Results: CIN 2 was observed in 16% (12/74) of women, CIN 3 in 23% (17/74), and, invasive cervical carcinoma (ICC) in 1% (1/74) of women. In women with CIN 3+, HPV 16 (44%), HPV 56 (33%), HPV 33 and 53 (HPV 53 (28%) were the most prevalent genotypes. HPV 53 was observed as a stand-alone HPV in one woman with ICC. A multivariate logistic regression adjusting for age, CD4 count and HPV co-infections suggested the presence of HPV 31 as a predictor of CIN 2+ (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]:4.9; p = 0.05; 95% (Confidence Interval) [CI]:1.03-22.5). Women with CIN2+ had a significantly higher viral log mean of HPV 16, (11.2 copies/ 10,000 cells; 95% CI: 9.0-13.4) than with CIN 1.

Conclusion: The high prevalence of HPV 53 in CIN 3 and as a stand-alone genotype in the patient with invasive cervical cancer warrants that its clinical significance be further revisited among HIV-infected women. HPV 31, along with elevated means of HPV 16 viral load were predictors of CIN 2 + .


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Virology Journal

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.