Detection of human papillomavirus in cervical smears: A comparison of in situ hybridization, immunocytochemistry and cytopathology

J. W. Gupta, P. K. Gupta, N. Rosenshein, K. V. Shah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A comparison of different methods for the detection of cervical human papillomavirus (HPV) infection was made on patients attending the cervical dysplasia clinic. Cytomorphology, immunocytochemistry and in situ hybridization were compared for their ability to detect HPV. Separate cervicovaginal smears from 50 patients were tested for HPV types 6/11, 16 and 18 by in situ hybridization using 35S-labeled DNA probes. Duplicate smears from the same patients were Papanicolaou stained and evaluated for evidence of condylomatous and dysplastic changes. Twenty-five matching cervical biopsies were immunostained for HPV capsid antigen and tested by in situ hybridization for HPV DNA. The cytologic smears of 20 patients (40%) were positive for HPV DNA. Six patients had HPV 6/11, ten had HPV 16, three had HPV 18, and one had both HPV 6/11 and HPV 16. There was a high correlation between condylomatous cytopathology and antigen and DNA detection. One-third of the specimens with condylomatous changes were DNA negative by the tested probes, suggesting the presence of other HPV types in the genital tract.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)387-396
Number of pages10
JournalActa cytologica
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Histology

Cite this