Polymer-Based Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay Using Human Papillomavirus Type 16 (HPV16) Virus-Like Particles Detects HPV16 Clade-Specific Serologic Responses


American Society for Microbiology


Human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV16) virus-like particles (VLP) were used as antigen in a polymer enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to measure antibodies to HPV capsid proteins. Serum samples from 575 college women, previously tested for the presence of cervicovaginal HPV DNA, were analyzed. The prevalences of anti-HPV16 VLP antibodies at baseline were 14.1% for immunoglobulin G (IgG) and 6.4% for IgA. The seroprevalences of IgG in women with cervicovaginal HPV16, HPV16-related types, and other HPV types were 55, 33, and 19%, respectively (P < 0.001), compared to the prevalence in women without an HPV infection (10%). HPV VLP IgA seropositivity was associated with high HPV16 VLP IgG optical density values. The seropositivity of IgG antibodies was independently associated with infection with HPV16 or HPV16-related types, increased number of lifetime male partners for vaginal sex, having sex with men ≥5 years older, history of abnormal PAP smear, older age, and living separately from parents. Use of HPV16 VLP polymer ELISA detects clade-specific responses and suggests an HPV16 VLP vaccine may have broader protection that initially anticipated.

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