Human papillomavirus detection in histologic samples of multifocal epithelial hyperplasia: a novel demographic presentation

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Human papillomavirus (HPV) typing of oral lesions microscopically consistent with multifocal epithelial hyperplasia (MEH) was performed to identify potential novel clinical presentations.

Study Design.

MEH (N = 22 lesions, 17 patients) and squamous papilloma control samples (N = 9 lesions, 9 patients) were compared by using polymerase chain reaction-based HPV genotyping. Student's t tests were used to compare continuous characteristics.


Of the study cases, 86.4% of MEH and only 11% of controls were positive for HPV (P = .0002). In MEH lesions, 45.5% contained HPV32, 36.4% HPV6, and 4.5% HPV40. MEH lesions were mostly multifocal (50%) and occurred in HIV-negative patients (81.3%). They predominated on the labial/buccal mucosa (63.3%), and there were significant differences between groups by anatomic site (P < .0001). HPV32, but not HPV6, was detected in known HIV-positive patients.


A novel clinical presentation of MEH associated with HPV32 in HIV-negative, middle-aged to older adults is reported here. One case with HPV40 is the first to be reported. Future detection protocols should include HPV32, as it may be currently overlooked.

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