Friday, October 3, 2008

HIV/AIDS Emerged as Early as 1880s

New research indicates that the most pervasive global strain of HIV began spreading among humans between 1884 and 1924, suggesting that growing urbanisation in colonial Africa set the stage for the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

The estimated period of origin, considerably earlier than the previous estimate of 1930, coincides with the establishment and rise of urban centers in west-central Africa where the pandemic HIV strain, HIV-1 group M, emerged. The growth of cities and associated high-risk behaviors may have been the key change that allowed the virus to flourish.

Read the full press release from the University of Arizona here.

HIV/AIDS Emerged as Early as 1880s, National Geographic (2 pages).

The paper of the research is published in the journal Nature and can be found here (not free).

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