Test tubes used in scientific clinical trialClinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. HPVANDME reaches out to leading HPV cancer researchers to learn about current clinical trials that may help you and future HPV-related cancer patients. Please let these organizations know that you learned about the trial on HPV AND ME.


Human papillomavirus (HPV) causes many different types of cancers. In men, HPV-related throat cancer is on the rise, and there is currently no screening test (such as the Pap test used to detect HPV cervical cancer).

MD Anderson Cancer Center is conducting a trial called HOUSTON (HPV-related Oropharyngeal and Uncommon Cancers Screening Trial Of Men) to develop a test that can be used to screen for HPV-related throat cancer.  Those who sign up will have access to tests that are not available to the general public.

This trial is open to men, ages 50-59. Learn more.

For questions or to enroll, email houstonhpvtrial@mdanderson.org or call 713-745-3511.





Dr. Sara Pai is a head and neck surgeon and an Associate Professor of Surgical Oncology at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.

For questions or to enroll, email Dr. Sara Pai.



CLINICAL TRIAL – CUE 101 Trial (actively recruiting)

An ongoing clinical trial led by Dr. Pai, the study’s principal investigator, seeks to assess the safety and efficacy of an immunotherapy as a possible treatment for HPV head and neck cancer. The study involves 15 sites across the US with the hope of sampling a diverse pool of participants. The eligibility criteria includes newly diagnosed patients with metastatic HPV-16 positive head and neck cancer. The trial is open to both male and female adults. This is the first time the drug is being studied in human subjects.

More information about this clinical trial. 


CLINICAL TRIAL – Oral Decitabine and Durvalumab Trial (actively recruiting)

This Phase 1 clinical trial is studying whether combining these two drugs is safe and will boost the participant’s immune system against the cancer cells. The goal is to determine the “highest effective dose” of the drug combination and the first step in identifying another possible treatment for head and neck cancer.


CLINICAL TRIAL #1 (now closed)

A Phase IB/II Study With Azacitidine, Durvalumab, and Tremelimumab in Recurrent and/or Metastatic Head and Neck Cancer Patients

The clinical trial is studying drugs that can boost the participant’s immune system against the cancer cells as a possible treatment for head and neck cancer.

This trial is open to male and female patients with confirmed recurrent and/or metastatic head and neck cancer in the oral cavity, oropharynx, hypopharynx, or larynx — either HPV-positive or HPV-negative — who has progressed on anti-PD1, anti-PD-L1, anti-CTLA-4 or any other immune checkpoint blockade therapy. Learn more.


CLINICAL TRIAL #2 (now closed)

Study of Pembrolizumab (MK-3475) in Participants With Advanced Solid Tumors

A 2013 study describes why HPV infects the tonsil as well as new therapies on how to reverse the immune system against the virus. The paper, Evidence for a role of the PD-1:PD-L1 pathway in immune resistance of HPV-associated head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, is the basis of this clinical trial using anti-PD-1 for this patient population. PD-1 stands for “programmed cell death protein 1.” Therapies targeting PD-1 may augment immune responses to viruses such as HPV.

This trial is ongoing but is not currently recruiting participants. Learn more.