Cholesteatoma of the middle ear is a relatively common disorder, often with severe consequences. Histologically, the aggressively growing, bone‐destructing form shows papillary growth and koilocytosis, which are characteristic of papillomavirus‐induced lesions. A PCR (polymerase chain reaction) method using degenerate primers for the detection of any known or as yet unknown HPV (human papillomavirus) type was applied in screening 51 biopsies from 42 patients. A resulting 36% (16/45) of the cholesteatomas were found to contain papillomavirus DNA, which hybridized under stringent conditions with an HPV‐II DNA probe. In 3 cases the presence of HPV‐II DNA could be confirmed by sequencing the PCR products. The mere presence of this HPV DNA does not prove an etiological role of this group of viruses in the induction of cholesteatomas. It does, however, identify another group of human proliferative lesions putatively linked to papillomavirus infections. © 1994 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research