Human Papillomavirus Working Group

Dr. Elizabeth Stier, HPV Chair Boston Medical Center HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease, infecting at least 75% of sexually active adults at some point in their lifetime. HPV causes most of the cancers of the anus and cervix, many head & neck cancers, as well as other cancers. The HPV Working Group has done several important studies that have changed the way in which patients with HIV and HPV-associated disease are treated. In one clinical study, our group showed that infrared coagulation (IRC) is a well-tolerated treatment of high-grade anal intra-epithelial neoplasia, a precursor to anal cancer.

The current goals of the HPV WG are to:

  • Evaluate the safety and efficacy of new methods of prevention and treatment of anal and cervical cancers and cancer precursors in HIV-positive patients.
  • Determine which proteins and genes in the blood and tumor specimens (also known as biologic correlates) will help predict a patient’s prognosis and response to treatment. Knowledge gained from this will be used to develop and test new treatment strategies.
  • Train clinicians in high-resolution anoscopy to expand expertise and availability of this procedure within the AMC.