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Cancers 2016, 8(4), 41; doi:10.3390/cancers8040041

HPV Positive Head and Neck Cancers: Molecular Pathogenesis and Evolving Treatment Strategies

Laboratory of Experimental Radiotherapy, Department of Oncology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven), 3000 Leuven, Belgium
Department of Radiation Oncology, Leuven Cancer Institute, University Hospitals Leuven, 3000 Leuven, Belgium
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Elena Kashuba
Received: 5 February 2016 / Revised: 9 March 2016 / Accepted: 23 March 2016 / Published: 29 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue HPV Associated Cancers)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1246 KB, uploaded 29 March 2016]   |  


Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is a highly heterogeneous disease that is the result of tobacco and/or alcohol abuse or infection with high-risk Human papillomaviruses. Despite the fact that HPV positive HNSCC cancers form a distinct clinical entity with better treatment outcome, all HNSCC are currently treated uniformly with the same treatment modality. At present, biologic basis of these different outcomes and their therapeutic influence are areas of intense investigation. In this review, we will summarize the molecular basis for this different outcome, novel treatment opportunities and possible biomarkers for HPV positive HNSCC. In particular, the focus will be on several molecular targeted strategies that can improve the chemoradiation response by influencing DNA repair mechanisms. View Full-Text
Keywords: HPV; head and neck cancer; radiation therapy; molecular pathogenesis HPV; head and neck cancer; radiation therapy; molecular pathogenesis

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Dok, R.; Nuyts, S. HPV Positive Head and Neck Cancers: Molecular Pathogenesis and Evolving Treatment Strategies. Cancers 2016, 8, 41.

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