Human papillomavirus (HPV) is known to be the cause of almost all cervical cancers. The genotypes have been classified into high and low risk types according to their oncogenic potential. However, data for many of the genotypes are limited and some (HPV-26, 53, and 66) have no agreed status. A study was undertaken to determine the HPV genotype distribution in women of Western Australia and the association with cervical neoplasia. Liquid based cervical samples from a cohort of 282 Western Australian women were tested for HPV DNA by PCR followed by DNA sequencing to determine HPV genotypes. HPV-53 and HPV-16 were the most common genotypes found in this population. In addition 86 archived liquid based cervical samples from women with cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grades 1-3 (CIN 1-3) were tested for HPV DNA. Also 32 archived paraffin biopsy samples from women with squamous cell carcinoma were also tested. HPV-16 was the most common genotype found in these samples. Of the cohort of Western Australian women tested, 27% were found to contain HPV and approximately half of these contained known high-risk HPV genotypes, but only 30% of these were types 16 or 18. The data from this study indicate that HPV-53 is not oncogenic based on an R value and odds ratio (OR) of zero. The data also suggest that HPV-73 may be oncogenic, while HPV-66 is unlikely to be. Two high-risk HPV genotypes that are associated with the Asian region (HPV-52 and HPV-58) were found in Western Australian women suggesting a possible epidemiological link between women in these countries. (c) 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.