Open Access Research

Oncogenic human papillomavirus genital infection in southern Iranian women: population-based study versus clinic-based data

Seyed Sajjad Eghbali12, Roya Amirinejad1, Narges Obeidi1, Shiva Mosadeghzadeh1, Katayoun Vahdat1, Fatemeh Azizi1, Raha Pazoki1, Zahra Sanjdideh1, Zahra Amiri1, Iraj Nabipour3 and Keivan Zandi14*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Virology, The Persian Gulf Tropical Medicine Research Center, Bushehr University of Medical Sciences, Bushehr, Iran

2 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Bushehr University of Medical Sciences, Bushehr, Iran

3 Department of Biochemistry, The Persian Gulf Marine Biotechnology Research Center, Bushehr University of Medical Sciences, Bushehr, Iran

4 Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Tropical and Infectious Disease Research and Education Center, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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Virology Journal 2012, 9:194  doi:10.1186/1743-422X-9-194

Published: 12 September 2012



Epidemiological studies on genital human papilloma viruses infection (HPVs) in general population are crucial for the implementation of health policy guidelines for developing the strategies to prevent the primary and secondary cervical cancer. In different parts of Iran, there is a lack of population-based studies to determine the prevalence of HPV in the general population. The aim of this population-based study is to compare the prevalence rate of genital HPV infection among reproductive women with our previous clinic-based data, which showed a prevalence rate of 5% in women in southern Iran.


Using general primers for all genotypes of HPV, of 799 randomly selected women, five (0.63%, 95% CI 0.23-1.55%) tested positive for HPV DNA. Overall, seven different HPV genotypes were detected: six types (16, 18, 31, 33, 51 and 56) were carcinogenic, or “high risk genotypes” and one genotype (HPV-66) was “probably carcinogenic.”


In a population-based study, the prevalence of HPV infection among southern Iranian women was lower than that observed worldwide. However, our gynaecological clinic-based study on the prevalence of HPV infection showed results comparable with other studies in the Middle East and Persian Gulf countries. Since gynaecological clinic-based data may generally overestimate HPV prevalence, estimates of prevalence according to clinic-based data should be adjusted downward by the population-based survey estimates.

Human papilloma virus; Bushehr; Cervical cancer; Iran; PCR