It has been well established that human papilloma virus (HPV) is closely linked to numerous cancers. Recently, evidence has been uncovered that show a link between HPV and prostate cancer. This provides us with more evidence that preventing these infections with the HPV vaccine can lead to a reduction in many types of cancers in both men and women.
All about HPV and the vaccine
I’ve written about the HPV cancer prevention vaccine over 100 times – however, this might be your first bit of research into the HPV vaccine (known as Gardasil, Cervarix or Silgard), so I feel it’s important to give the readers a brief overview of the disease. If you’ve read it before, please skip to the next section.
Genital and oral human papillomavirus (HPV) are the most common sexually transmitted infections (STI) in the USA. There are more than 150 strains or subtypes of HPV that can infect humans, although only 40 of these strains are linked to a variety of cancers. HPV is generally transmitted from personal contact during vaginal, anal or oral sex.
Although the early symptoms of HPV infections aren’t serious, those infections are closely linked to many types of cancers in men and women. According to current medical research, here are some of the cancers that are linked to HPV:
These are all dangerous and disfiguring cancers that can be mostly prevented by the HPV cancer vaccine. If you’re a male, and you think that these are mostly female cancers, penile cancer can lead to amputation of your penis. Just think about that guys.
HPV is believed to cause nearly 5% of all new cancers across the world, making it almost as dangerous as tobacco with respect to cancer. According to the CDC, roughly 79 million Americans are infected with HPV–approximately 14 million Americans contract HPV every year. Most individuals don’t even know they have the infection until the onset of cancer. About 27,000 HPV-related cancers are diagnosed in the USA every year.
Gardasil-9, the current version of the HPV cancer vaccine, protects teens and young adults from 9 subtypes of cancer-causing HPV, which leads to lower risks of more types of cancer. So, if you’re looking for an effective and inexpensive way to prevent a few of the 200-250 cancers that afflict humans, Gardasil is one of your best choices. That why I call it the anti-cancer vaccine.
HPV and prostate cancer
Yin et al. published a meta-analysis, in Oncology Letters, that examined the possibility of a correlations between human papilloma virus and prostate cancer. Meta-analyses are at the top of the hierarchy of scientific research, because they roll up data from numerous studies, generally reducing the risk of bias.
Yin et al. reviewed 24 case-control studies (971 cases and 1085 control patients) identified using PubMed, Web of Science, Cochrane, Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure, China Wan Fang, and China Biomedical Literature databases. They then estimated the association between HPV infection and prostate cancer risk.
HPV infection was associated with a substantially high risk for prostate cancer (pooled odds ratio was equal 2.27; 95% CI, 1.40-3.69) compared with the non-HPV infected control group. That is, there was a 2.27X higher risk for prostate cancer if there is an HPV infection.
The researchers examined the possibility for bias across geography, publication years, and other possible confounders, and found none. The authors indicated that they found little evidence of publication bias.
The authors concluded that:
The meta‑analysis suggested that HPV infection is associated with increasing risk of prostate cancer, which indicated a potential pathogenetic link between HPV and prostate cancer.
This research confirms a previous meta-analysis that found that HPV was observed more frequently in prostate cancer cases. Furthermore, they established that the strains of HPV observed in prostate cancer were the higher risk types, Types 6 and 11.
Conclusions about HPV and prostate cancer
There appears to be clear evidence that HPV is correlated with prostate cancer, a disease that strikes older males throughout the world. Although it will not eliminate the risk of prostate cancer, both the quadrivalent and 9-valent (Gardasil 9) versions of the HPV vaccine can prevent the most dangerous types of HPV infection that lead to prostate cancer.
Gardasil is the cancer prevention vaccine, and now we have evidence that it may protect against prostate cancers. Let’s make sure our kids are protected from HPV.
- Yang L, Xie S, Feng X, Chen Y, Zheng T, Dai M, Zhou CK, Hu Z, Li N, Hang D. Worldwide Prevalence of Human Papillomavirus and Relative Risk of Prostate Cancer: A Meta-analysis. Sci Rep. 2015 Oct 6;5:14667. doi: 10.1038/srep14667. PubMed PMID: 26441160; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4594101.
- Yin B, Liu W, Yu P, Liu C, Que C, Duan X, Liao Z, Chen Y, Wang X, Pan X, Tao Z. Association between human papillomavirus and prostate cancer: a meta-analysis. Oncology Lett. 2017 Jun 9. doi: 10.3892/ol.2017.6367.