Roles of APOBEC3A and APOBEC3B in human papillomavirus infection and disease progression

Cody J. Warren, Joseph A. Westrich, Koenraad Van Doorslaer, Dohun Pyeon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


The apolipoprotein B messenger RNA-editing, enzyme-catalytic, polypeptide-like 3 (APOBEC3) family of cytidine deaminases plays an important role in the innate immune response to viral infections by editing viral genomes. However, the cytidine deaminase activity of APOBEC3 enzymes also induces somatic mutations in host genomes, which may drive cancer progression. Recent studies of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and disease outcome highlight this duality. HPV infection is potently inhibited by one family member, APOBEC3A. Expression of APOBEC3A and APOBEC3B is highly elevated by the HPV oncoproteins E6 and E7 during persistent virus infection and disease progression. Furthermore, there is a high prevalence of APOBEC3A and APOBEC3B mutation signatures in HPV-associated cancers. These findings suggest that induction of an APOBEC3-mediated antiviral response during HPV infection may inadvertently contribute to cancer mutagenesis and virus evolution. Here, we discuss current understanding of APOBEC3A and APOBEC3B biology in HPV restriction, evolution, and associated cancer mutagenesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number233
Issue number8
StatePublished - Feb 21 2017


  • Apolipoprotein b messenger RNA-editing
  • Cancer mutagenesis
  • Cancer progression
  • Enzyme-catalytic
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Innate immunity
  • Papillomavirus
  • Polypeptide-like 3 (APOBEC3)
  • Somatic mutation
  • Virus evolution
  • Virus restriction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology


Dive into the research topics of 'Roles of APOBEC3A and APOBEC3B in human papillomavirus infection and disease progression'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this