Virally mediated cervical cancer in the iatrogenically immunocompromised: Applications for psychoneuroimmunology

Sally E. Jensen, Brandy Lehman, Michael H Antoni, Deidre B. Pereira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations


Oncogenic or high-risk (HR) human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is implicated in the pathogenesis of a number of cancers, including cervical cancer. HPV infected individuals who are immunocompromised secondary to acquired (e.g., human immunodeficiency virus [HIV]) or iatrogenic (e.g., systemic lupus erythematosus [SLE] patients and organ and hematopoeitic stem cell transplant recipients undergoing immunosuppressive therapy) immune deficiency are particularly at risk for HPV-initiated cervical neoplasia and cancer. Psychoneuroimmunologic (PNI) research has demonstrated that psychosocial factors such as stress, pessimism, and sleep quality may play a role in the promotion of HPV-mediated cervical neoplasia in HIV-positive women. However, no research to our knowledge has examined PNI mechanisms of HPV-mediated cervical neoplasia and cancer in women who are undergoing iatrogenic immunosuppressive therapy for the treatment of autoimmune disease or the prevention of graft-rejection. This article reviews the PNI mechanisms that may underlie the promotion of HPV-mediated cervical neoplasia and applies this model to HPV-infected women who are iatrogenically immunosuppressed, an understudied population at-risk for cervical cancer. Female transplant recipients, one such group, may provide a unique paradigm in which to explore further PNI mechanisms of HPV-mediated cervical neoplasia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)758-766
Number of pages9
JournalBrain, Behavior, and Immunity
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 1 2007



  • Cervical cancer
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI)
  • Renal transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems

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