Writing Exercise #3

Out of the six HPV strains that are classified as “carcinogenic to humans” I think the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) should be covered in a new treatment.

It would be well worth it to design a preventative vaccine for HCV which should be administered before infection in order to prevent infection. HCV would be well worth designing a new treatment for because there is a relatively high incidence rate in the United States and the virus is proven to be fatal. It is associated with asymptomatic acute hepatitis, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and possibly Cholangiocarcinoma. Its association with chronic hepatitis, liver cancer, and HCC are well worth the cost and benefit. The list for a liver transplant is long and many patients die before receiving one. I feel that a new treatment for HCV would be worth the cost.

I would also argue for Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpes virus (KSHV) since it is know to be associated with Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS), however, the incidence of KS is so rare that the cost may not be worth the benefit. The same goes for Merkel cell polyomavirus. Merkel cell carcinoma is fatal but it is usually only found in elderly, immunosuppressed patients. It sounds harsh but in most Merkel cell carcinoma cases, a new treatment may not be worth the cost. The same goes for Epstein Barr virus, there is an association with nasopharyngeal carcinoma, Hodgkins lymphoma, and extranodal NK/T-cell lymphomas but out of the six HPV, the cost may not be worth the benefit due to the nature of the diseases it’s associated with and the incidence of the disease in the United States.

Of course, if money were not a factor I would say treat them all, but in this case, I feel that out of the six HPV strains known to be carinogenic, HCV should be treated first.


Sarid R, Gao SJ. 2011. Viruses and Human Cancer: From Detection to Causality. Cancer Lett 305(2): 218-227.

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One Reply to “Writing Exercise #3”

  1. After reading, Guinane and Cotter’s review on the Role of the gut microbiota in health and chronic gastrointestinal disease: understanding a hidden metabolic organ, I feel that there needs to be more research focused on the mechanisms that certain microbes have when it comes to irritable bowel syndrome, irritable bowel disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. The microbes are not only appearing to be carcinogenic but they also play a role in some of the larger, more common diseases. The potential role microbes have in obesity could truly alter the way obesity and type 2 diabetics are treated in a clinical setting.

    Guinane C, Cotter P. 2013. Role of the gut microbiota in health and chronic gastrointestinal disease: understanding a hidden metabolic organ. Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology.

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