The mouth and oropharynx malignant neoplasias, especially spinal cell carcinoma, represent approximately 5% of all malignant neoplasias, and in the head and neck surgery department these lesions correspond to 30% of all cancers diagnosed annually in the world. Epidemiologic data points to environmental exposures as the main risk factor. The use of tobacco with or without alcohol ingestion is considered the main risk factor. Nevertheless, about 20% of the tumors affect non-users, indicating other risk factors, such as genetic susceptibility and viral infections. Several studies relate the human papiloma virus (HPV) to the upper respiratory-digestive tract mucosa epidermoid carcinoma oncogenesis, since the virus is knowingly associated to cervical cancer in more than 95% of the cases. The HPV-16 and HPV-18 are considered high risk viruses, given that they have the ability to transform infected cells. Several authors believe that many variables may interfere on viral DNA detection, such as the kind of sample collected and the chosen extraction method. Nowadays, the oral mucosa biopsy and the paraffin blocks of preserved material are the most common extraction methods used for gathering material for the HPV diagnosis. However, some studies in the otorhinolaryngology field carry out the material extraction by the oral mucosa swab method, a simple technique, minimally invasive and low cost. The present study aims to determine the real capacity of the swab method for extraction of appropriate material for the HPV-16 and HPV-18 viruses' diagnosis when compared to the biopsy method.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: