Skip to Main Content

COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.

What people with cancer should know:

Get the latest public health information from CDC:

Get the latest research information from NIH:

About this Publication
Sexually transmissible infections and prostate cancer risk.
Pubmed ID
18768506 (View this publication on the PubMed website)
Digital Object Identifier
Cancer Epidemiol. Biomarkers Prev. 2008 Sep; Volume 17 (Issue 9): Pages 2374-81

Huang WY, Hayes R, Pfeiffer R, Viscidi RP, Lee FK, Wang YF, Reding D, Whitby D, Papp JR, Rabkin CS


BACKGROUND: Sexually transmissible infections (STI) have been variably associated with increased risks of prostate cancer, largely in case-control studies.

METHODS: In the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial, we examined risk of prostate cancer in relation to serum antibodies to Chlamydia trachomatis, human papillomavirus-16 and -18, herpes simplex virus-2, cytomegalovirus, and human herpesvirus-8 in 868 cases (765 Whites and 103 Blacks) and 1,283 controls matched by race, age, time since initial screening, and year of blood draw; all blood samples were collected at least 1 year before prostate cancer diagnosis, except for 43 Black cases. We also assessed risk associated with self-reported history of syphilis and gonorrhea.

RESULTS: Prevalences of the 7 STIs among controls were weakly correlated, and all were more frequent among Blacks than Whites, except for human herpesvirus-8. Among Whites, prostate cancer risk was not significantly associated with the individual infections or with their number (P(trend) = 0.1); however, men with one or more STI had slightly higher risk (odds ratio, 1.3; 95% confidence interval, 1.0-1.6). Among Blacks, excess risk was associated with IgA antibody to C. trachomatis (odds ratio, 2.1; 95% confidence interval, 1.2-3.6).

CONCLUSION: This large prospective study of prostate cancer shows no consistent association with specific STIs and a borderline association with any versus none. Whether a shared response or correlated infection not directly measured underlies the weak association requires further study.

Related CDAS Studies
Related CDAS Projects