In this study we investigated the involvement of p53 polymorphism at codon 72, the infection and typing of human papillomavirus (HPV) and the correlation of p53 polymorphism with HPV type and other clinicopathologic characteristics in 72 Hong Kong women with cervical cancer. We developed a simple and nonradioactive method for determining polymorphism at codon 72 of the p53 gene. The homozygous p53 arginine allele (Arg/Arg) was detected in 22 (31%), the homozygous p53 proline allele (Pro/Pro) in 14 (19%) and the heterozygous allele (Arg/Pro) in 36 (50%) cases, respectively. Using the consensus primers MY11 and MY09, HPV infection was detected in 55 of 72 (76%) cases. The prevalent types were HPV-16 (55%), HPV-18 (16%) and HPV-58 (9%). The number of HPV-positive cases with Arg/Arg, Pro/Pro and Arg/Pro were 17 (31%), 12 (22%) and 26 (47%), respectively. The p53 polymorphism at codon 72 was not significantly correlated with any of the HPV types (p > 0.05). No striking overrepresentation of homozygous arginine-72 p53 was observed in HPV-associated cervical cancer. The results in this study did not show that any p53 polymorphic form has a prognostic significance for cervical cancer.

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