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Where does Aids come from?

The first recognised cases of Aids occurred in America in the summer of 1981, and soon afterwards in Africa. In the beginning doctors did not know what caused this disease, and it was only in 1983 that scientists discovered that Aids is caused by a virus - now known as HIV-1.

There are two viruses associated with Aids, namely HIV-1 and HIV-2.

HIV-1 is associated with infection in most parts of Africa, America, Europe and the rest of the world, while HIV-2 occurs mostly in West-Africa. There are many subtypes of HIV-1 (for example subtype C which is most prominent in South Africa).

There are many theories about the origin of Aids, but the truth is that nobody really knows where Aids came from. The most widely accepted theory is that HIV crossed the species barrier from primates to humans at some time during the twentieth century.

HIV is related to a virus called SIV (simian immunodeficiency virus) which is found in primates such as chimpanzees, Macaque and African green monkeys. The virus probably crossed from primates to humans when contaminated animal blood entered cuts on the hands of humans who were butchering SIV-infected animals for food.

While the initial spread of HIV was probably limited to isolated communities who had little contact with the outside world, various factors such as migration, improved transportation networks, socio-economic instability, multiple sexual partners, intravenous drug use and an exchange of blood products, ultimately caused the virus to spread all over the world.

Provided by ArmMed Media
Revision date: July 8, 2011
Last revised: by Jorge P. Ribeiro, MD

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This is an excellent article; and it is somewhat correct in saying nobody knows where AIDS came from…Fundamentally, disease starts with lack of sanitation followed by infected people with a weakened immune system.. I well remember the SanFrancisco news in 1982 about AIDS being originated in the Sutro Bath House where male homosexuals were well known to congregate and to have group sex..I personally observed that from a distance as they had a sidewalk sign saying family bath….  My conclusion is that AIDS/HIV has several origins..Contaminated vaccine needles in Africa, perhaps monkey meat and blood entering cuts on hands, drug users sharing needles, male anal sexual activities, and probably some other origins all related to serious lack of proper sanitation…The post which states sex has nothing to do with aids is far far off base…unless it just refers to heterosexual sex..  Male group sex in SanFran in 1982 was considered by several medical researshers and experts the origin…Other origins were later postulated…Obviously Aids/Hiv could have had more than one origin…  Many many people around the world just want to do anything they please, ingnore the consequences, and expect science to solve their problem for them… Most religious organizations should stop preaching hellfire and brimstone and donate some monies to research..  Monogamy, abstinence, virginity are all very virtuous….but most of us are not up to the task… And, when it comes to sharing needles, Hepetitis C is no cakewalk…and drug useage does indeed weaken most immune systems…

posted by DENIS BYRNE on 05/12/2012 at 9:51 pm -08:00

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