Newsweek interviews Ilir Agalliu, Ph.D., about his research with Robert Burk, M.D., that found HPV significantly increases the risk of head and neck cancer. In a study of nearly 100,000 people, the researchers found that when HPV-16 is found in the mouth, people are 22 times more likely to develop cancer than those without it. Dr. Agalliu is assistant professor of epidemiology and population health and Dr. Burk is professor of pediatrics, of microbiology & immunology, of obstetrics & gynecology and women’s health and of epidemiology & population health at Einstein and attending physician, pediatrics at Montefiore Health System. Drs. Agalliu and Burk are also members of the NCI-designated Albert Einstein Cancer Center’s Cancer Epidemiology program.

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