Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Methylation
Pulling from specimens accumulated in cohort and case-control studies, we are examining the methylation of the HPV viral genome in relation to risk of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia 3 (CIN 3) and cancer. As a general rule for multiple HPV types, increased methylation particularly of CpG sites in the L1 gene is strongly associated with increased risk of CIN 3 and cancer. The goal is to understand the etiologic meaning and possible biomarker utility of viral (and cervical) gene methylation for the prevention of cancer. This is a Cancer Moonshot priority.