Detection of human papillomavirus in matched cervical smears and biopsy specimens by non-isotopic in situ hybridisation

G. Troncone, C. S. Herrington, K. Cooper, M. L. de Angelis, J. O. McGee

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    Aims: To determine the relative diagnostic sensitivity of non-isotopic
    in situ hybridisation (NISH) for the diagnosis of human papillomavirus
    (HPV) on matched smears and biopsy specimens; to compare the NISH signal
    type in the two samples; and to correlate the NISH data with the
    morphological diagnosis. Methods: HPV samples were assayed individually
    by NISH with digoxigenin
    labelled probes (HPV6, 11, 16, 18, and 33) on routinely collected
    paraffin wax embedded cervical biopsy specimens and for high risk HPVs
    with a cocktail of similarly labelled probes (HPV16, 18, 33) on matched
    smears. These were taken at the same colposcopic examination from 32
    patients investigated for an abnormal cervical Papanicolaou (PAP)
    stained smear. Results: An HPV signal was present in 18 (56%) biopsy
    specimens and in 14 (44%) smears. There was higher concordance of sets
    of data in the presence of cytopathic wart virus changes. The
    superiority of biopsy over smear in detecting HPV was mainly the result
    of examining the entire cervical biopsy specimen rather than cells
    scraped from the cervical surface. The NISH signal type in both biopsy
    specimen and smear was similar; it has been shown that NISH type 1
    signal correlates with episomal viral replication and type 2 and 3
    signals with viral integration. Conclusions: These data show that NISH
    on cervical smears is a worthwhile primary screen for HPV infection. The
    NISH signal types in cervical smears are similar to those previously
    described in cervical biopsy specimens.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)308-313
    Number of pages6
    JournalJournal of Clinical Pathology
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 1992


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