History of HIV/AIDS

How did it began? How did it spread?

HIV was identified in 1983 and is surprisingly old. The cases of AIDS are divided into 3 groups and have "debuted" in humans at least three separate times. The virus had jumped from Cameroon chimps to humans sometime before 1931. Using samples of HIV-infected tissue harvested over the last 3 decades, Dr. Bette Korber of Los Alamos National Laboratory has calculated that an ancestral form of HIV started spreading slowly in humans about 75 years ago. HIV can also be transmitted during sexual contact, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, injection drug use, ect.

Impact On Our World

Researching about HIV/AIDS have allowed scientists to have a better understanding on multiple topics. It has helped scientists understand why HIV's ancestor (SIV) doesn't affect chimps who carry it. This would allow researchers to make drugs with fewer side effects and better vaccines. One scientist has said, "The fact that it could be with us for quite a long time before we even realized it was there is kind of eye-opening." This has put a new viewpoint in our eyes and kept us surprised. Because of this epidemic, households, children, enterprises, ect. have been impacted. Especially economically, HIV/AIDS has mainly left a negative impact on the government and African countries.

Treating HIV/AIDS

In 1987, a drug called AZT became the first approved treatment for the HIV disease. Since then, approximately 30 drugs have been approved to treat people living with HIV/AIDS and many more are currently being worked on. No drug can cure HIV, but taking 3 different HIV meds does the best job of controlling the amount of virus in your body and protecting your immune system. Taking more than one drug also prevents you from allowing mutations to be made. The combo is known as "the cocktail."