Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is a well-established cause of cervical cancer and there is growing evidence of HPV being a relevant factor in other anogenital cancers (vulva, vagina, anus and penis) as well as head and neck cancers. HPV refers to a group of more than 200 related viruses with over 40 types transmitted through direct sexual contact – vaginal, anal, and oral sex – from the skin and mucous membranes of infected people to those of their partners . Infections may be asymptomatic. However, prolonged and persistent infections with high-risk types can lead to cell changes that, if left untreated, may progress to cancer. Learn more about this at Catching Cervical Cancer (Star, 8 March 2020).