What are characteristics of human papillomavirus (HPV)?

Updated: Feb 20, 2020
  • Author: Peter A Gearhart, MD; Chief Editor: Pranatharthi Haran Chandrasekar, MBBS, MD  more...
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Answer

Papillomaviruses are highly species-specific and do not infect other species, even under laboratory conditions. Humans are the only known reservoir for HPV. Papillomaviruses have never been grown in vitro but have been characterized by molecular methods. These viruses are classified by the molecular similarity of their genetic material and are assigned a genotype number.


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