Prevalence and genotype distribution of human papillomavirus in cervical adenocarcinoma (usual type and variants): A systematic review and meta-analysis

Celia Reynders, Thomas Lerho, Emily A. Goebel, Christopher P. Crum, Sandrina Vandenput, Charlotte Beaudart, Michael Herfs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cervical glandular neoplasms represent a heterogeneous group of tumors for which a comprehensive overview of the involvement of high-risk human papillomaviruses (HPV) in pathogenesis is still lacking. We first searched MEDLINE (PubMed), Embase, and Scopus databases (until October 2022), and systematically reviewed available literature. We then quantitatively estimated both pooled and genotype-specific prevalence of HPV DNA as well as the influence of various factors (e.g., geographical region, histological subtype, tissue/sample type) on computed effect size by means of random effects meta-analysis. In total, 379 studies comprising 17 129 cases of cervical adenocarcinoma were identified. The pooled HPV prevalence was 78.4% (95% confidence interval [95% CI]: 76.2–80.3) with a significant between-study heterogeneity (I2 = 79.4%, Q test p < 0.0001). Subgroup analyses indicated that the effect size differed substantially by geographical region (from 72.5% [95% CI: 68.7–76.1] in Asia to 86.8% [95% CI: 82.2–90.3] in Oceania) (p < 0.0001) and histological subtype of cancer (from 9.8% [95% CI: 5.5–17] in gastric-type to 85% [95% CI: 79.6–89.2] in usual-type cervical adenocarcinoma) (p < 0.0001). HPV16 and HPV18 were by far the most frequently detected viral strains with specific prevalence of 49.8% (95% CI: 46.9–52.6) and 45.3% (95% CI: 42.8–47.8), respectively. When stratified by continent or histologic variant, these genotype-specific results varied in a relatively limited manner. Altogether, these findings support that all histological subtypes of cervical adenocarcinoma are etiologically linked to high-risk HPV but to varying degrees. Therefore, a dual-criteria classification taking into account accurately both morphological and virological aspects could be an interesting evolution of the current binary World Health Organization classification, better reflecting the pathogenic diversity of the disease.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere29190
JournalJournal of medical virology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023


  • cervical adenocarcinoma
  • epidemiology
  • HPV
  • meta-analysis


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