Type-specific antiviral antibodies to genital human papillomavirus types in mothers and newborns

Kurt Heim, Gernot Hudelist, Andrea Geier, Hannes Szedenik, Neil D. Christensen, Nicole Concin, Anton Bergant, Birgit Volgger, Klaus Czerwenka, Reinhard Höpfl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Type-specific antibodies to human papillomaviruses (HPVs) can be detected in most infected adult patients, and they have virus-neutralizing properties. However, there is a dearth of information on the seroprevalence of maternal and neonatal antibodies to HPV capsid antigens. Sera from 104 mothers, their newborns, and 3 twin pregnancies were analyzed by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the presence of specific IgG, IgM, and IgA antibodies to virus-like particles of HPV-6, -11, -16, -18, and -31. Maternal IgG positivity rates to HPV types 6, 11, 16, 18, and 31 were 23.1%, 2.9%, 8.7%, 5.8%, and 9.6%, respectively. Neonatal rates did not differ significantly, and individual IgG ELISA values of mothers and their infants and all paired twins showed a very high correlation. In contrast, nearly all IgM and IgA individual values in newborns were designated negative, whereas mothers' positivity rates ranged as high as 19.2%. Infants showed no HPV-related lesions at birth or at 4-year follow-up. Seven of 8 tested children lost IgG HPV antibodies in a follow-up examination. Similar anti-HPV IgG seropositivity in mothers and newborns and a lack of neonatal IgA and IgM together with twin and follow-up results indicate that neonatal IgG is not a sign of intrauterine HPV infection but, rather, maternofetal antibody transmission.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)806-814
Number of pages9
JournalReproductive Sciences
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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