Human papillomavirus infection at the United States-Mexico border: Implications for cervical cancer prevention and control

Anna R. Giuliano, Mary Papenfuss, Martha Abrahamsen, Jill Guernsey De Zapien, Jennifer Stephan, Jill Guernsey De Zapien, Janine Feng, Susie Baldwin, Francisco Garcia, Kenneth Hatch, Catalina Denman, Jose Luis Navarro Henze, Elena Mendez Brown De Galaz, Luis Ortega

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations


The United States-Mexico border is a region comprised of a country with one of the highest rates of invasive cervical cancer (Mexico) and a country with one of the lowest rates (United States). Recent evidence clearly indicates that human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is the cause of cervical cancer. The distribution of specific types of HPV is known to vary in different regions of the world, as do the cofactors that may inhibit or promote HPV carcinogenesis. Estimating the prevalence of oncogenic HPV is needed for guiding vaccine development. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of oncogenic and nononcogenic HPV types and risk factors for HPV among women residing along the United States-Mexico border. A cross-sectional study of 2319 women, ages 15-79 years, self-referring for gynecological care was conducted between 1997 and 1998. HPV was detected by PCR using the PYGMY 09/11 L1 consensus primer, and HPV genotyping was conducted using the reverse line blot method. Overall, the HPV prevalence was 14.4% with no significant differences observed by country after adjustment for age. HPV 16 was the most commonly detected HPV type in both the United States and Mexico. Among women with high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions, HPV types 58, 45, 51, 31, 35, 55, and 73 were most common in Mexico, and HPV types 18, 31, 35, 51, 52, and 58 were most common in the United States. In both countries, HPV prevalence declined linearly with age from 25% among women ages 15-19 years to 5.3% among women 56-65 years. Factors significantly independently associated with HPV infection were older age [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 0.15 for ages 56-65 years compared with those 15-19 years], a marital status other than married (AOR = 1.58-3.29), increased numbers of lifetime male partners (AOR = 3.8 for ≥ 10 partners compared with I partner), concurrent infection with Chlamydia trachomatis (AOR = 1.79), ever use of Norplant (AOR = 2.69), and current use of injectable contraceptives (AOR = 2.29). Risk factors for HPV infection did not differ by country. Results from this study suggest that in addition to HPV 16 and 18, HPV types 31, 45, 51, and 58 should be considered for inclusion in an HPV prevention vaccine for distribution in Mexico.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1129-1136
Number of pages8
JournalCancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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