Does Hiv Viral Load Affect Getting Or Transmitting Hiv
Yes. Viral load is the amount of HIV in the blood of someone who has HIV. If taken as prescribed, HIV medicine can reduce a persons HIV viral load very low level, which keeps the immune system working and prevents illness. This is called viral suppression, defined as having less than 200 copies of HIV per milliliter of blood.
HIV medicine can also make the viral load so low that a standard lab test cant detect it. This is called having an undetectable level viral load. Almost everyone who takes HIV medicine as prescribed can achieve an undetectable viral load, usually within 6 months after starting treatment.
As noted above, people with HIV who take HIV medicine as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load can live long and healthy lives and will not transmit HIVto their HIV-negative partnersthrough sex.
HIV medicine is a powerful tool for preventing sexual transmission of HIV. But it works only if the HIV-positive partner gets and keeps an undetectable viral load. Not everyone taking HIV medicine has an undetectable viral load. To stay undetectable, people with HIV must take HIV medicine as prescribed and visit their health care provider regularly to get a viral load test. Learn more.
Discredited Hiv/aids Origins Theories
Various fringe theories have arisen to speculate about purported alternative origins for the human immunodeficiency virus and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome , with claims ranging from it being due to accidental exposure to supposedly purposeful acts. Several inquiries and investigations have been carried out as a result, and each of these theories has consequently been determined to be based on unfounded and/or false information. HIV has been shown to have evolved from or be closely related to the simian immunodeficiency virus in West Central Africa sometime in the early 20th century. HIV was discovered in the 1980s by the French scientist Luc Montagnier. Before the 1980s, HIV was an unknown deadly disease.
Spread To The Western Hemisphere
Further isolated occurrences of this infection may have been emerging as early as 1966. The virus eventually entered gay male communities in large United States cities, where a combination of casual, multi-partner sexual activity and relatively high transmission rates associated with anal intercourse allowed it to spread explosively enough to finally be noticed.
Because of the long incubation period of HIV before symptoms of AIDS appear, and because of the initially low incidence, HIV was not noticed at first. By the time the first reported cases of AIDS were found in large United States cities, the prevalence of HIV infection in some communities had passed 5%. Worldwide, HIV infection has spread from urban to rural areas, and has appeared in regions such as China and India.
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Where Did Hiv Come From A Look At The Origins Of The Pandemic Of Our Time
A chimpanzees virus has killed 35 million humans.
That virus, commonly known as HIV, is the defining pandemic of our time. More than 35 million people have been killed by the virus to date. But the virus itself didnt get its start in humans.
HIV/AIDS is, like the vast majority of emerging viruses infecting people, zoonotic in nature. The AIDS crisis, as we generally think of it, began in the 1980s. First as a mysterious illness primarily infecting gay men in urban areas in the United States. But thats not really the beginning. Before the diseases first mention in 1982 in the New York Times, people had been dying of AIDS for at least a decade, though probably not much longer. In Africa, HIVthe virus that causes AIDShad jumped from chimpanzees to humans sometime early in the 20th century.
To date, the earliest known case of HIV-1 infection in human blood is from a sample taken in 1959 from a man whod died in Kinshasa in what was then the Belgian Congo.
Its this fact which keeps me awake at night. Imagine, for a moment, that the HIV virus in that 1959 sample had been studied and identified. If, in the 1950s, the scientific community realized the potential harm this new virus could unleash. What could we have done? What therapies could we have developed before it became one of the deadliest pandemics in human history? Would we have a cure by now?
That work takes several forms, including:
Oral Polio Vaccine Theory
In the 1999 version of his OPV AIDS hypothesis, Edward Hooper proposed that early batches of the oral polio vaccine grown in cultures of chimpanzee kidney cells, infected with a chimpanzee virus, were the original source of HIV-1 in Central Africa. A vial of the batch most strongly implicated by Hooper was found in storage in the UK, and analysis found no HIV/SIV sequences or chimpanzee cellular components, but did find traces of macaque mitochondria. Analysis of five samples of OPV in storage at the Wistar Institute, including one from a batch used in the Belgian Congo between 1958 and 1960, found no chimpanzee DNA. Other molecular biology and phylogenetic studies also contradict the hypothesis, and scientific consensus regards it as disproven. A 2004 article in the journal Nature described the hypothesis as “refuted”.
These theories generally attribute HIV’s origin to the US government or its contractors:
Jakob Segal , a professor at Humboldt University in then-East Germany, proposed that HIV was engineered at a U.S. military laboratory at Fort Detrick, by splicing together two other viruses, Visna and HTLV-1. According to his theory, the new virus, created between 1977 and 1978, was tested on prison inmates who had volunteered for the experiment in exchange for early release. He further suggested that it was through these prisoners that the virus was spread to the population at large.
Conspiracy to decrease the population
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The Cultural Response To Hiv
Public response was negative in the early years of the epidemic.
In 1983, Dr. Joseph Sonnabend in New York was threatened with eviction for treating people with HIV, leading to the first AIDS discrimination lawsuit.
Bathhouses across the country closed due to sexual activity and the associated risk. Some schools also barred children with HIV from attending.
U.S. blood banks started screening for HIV in 1985, and men who had sex with men were banned from donating blood . first lifted some of its restrictions in December 2015. The FDA loosened its restrictions again in 2020, motivated by the blood shortage caused by COVID-19.)
In 1987, the United States placed a travel ban on visitors and immigrants with HIV.
The United States government resisted funding needle exchange programs due to the War on Drugs. NEPs were shown to be effective at reducing HIV transmission.
In 1997, researchers calculated that this resistance accounted for .
The number of avoidable transmissions may be even higher.
A 2005 study looked at people in New York City who used injectable drugs and had been admitted to a drug detoxification program. The researchers concluded that the legalization of syringe exchange programs helped reduce HIV prevalence among this group from 50 percent in 1990 to 17 percent in 2002.
The Patient Zero Myth
For decades, a French-Canadian airline employee named Gaetan Dugas, has been known as Patient Zero in the 1980s AIDS epidemic.
Dugas, a man who had sex with men , died in 1984. Since then he has been blamed by some as a primary source for the spread of HIV in North America.
Dugas was one of the primary villains in the 1987 book, And the Band Played On, by San Francisco journalist Randy Shilts.
However, the researchers now say Dugas was falsely accused and unfairly blamed.
Gaetan Dugas is one of the most demonized patients in history, and one of a long line of individuals and groups vilified in the belief that they somehow fueled epidemics with malicious intent, said Richard McKay, D.Phil., a Wellcome Trust Research Fellow in Cambridges Department of History and Philosophy of Science, in a press release.
In fact, McKay says, Dugas actually provided scientists with valuable information before he died.
Dugas told researchers after he contracted HIV that he had 750 sexual partners the previous three years. That wasnt necessarily an unusual number. Researchers said 65 percent of men in a Los Angeles cluster study at the time reported having more than 1,000 sexual partners in their lifetimes.
Much of that sexual connection was with anonymous partners, so many HIV patients couldnt give medical officials any names.
However, McKay says, Dugas provided medical officials with 72 names. That helped scientists track down a wide range of people infected with HIV.
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Groups And Subtypes Of Hiv
Genetic studies have led to a general classification system for HIV that is primarily based on the degree of similarity in viral gene sequence. The two major classes of HIV are HIV-1 and HIV-2. HIV-1 is divided into three groups, known as group M , group O , and group N . Worldwide, HIV-1 group M causes the majority of HIV infections, and it is further subdivided into subtypes A through K, which differ in expression of viral genes, virulence, and mechanisms of transmission. In addition, some subtypes combine with one another to create recombinant subtypes. HIV-1 group M subtype B is the virus that spread from Africa to Haiti and eventually to the United States. Pandemic forms of subtype B are found in North and South America, Europe, Japan, and Australia. Subtypes A, C, and D are found in sub-Saharan Africa, although subtypes A and C are also found in Asia and some other parts of the world. Most other subtypes of group M are generally located in specific regions of Africa, South America, or Central America.
In 2009 a new strain of HIV-1 was discovered in a woman from Cameroon. The virus was closely related to a strain of SIV found in wild gorillas. Researchers placed the new virus into its own group, HIV-1 group P, because it was unique from all other types of HIV-1. It was unclear whether the newly identified virus causes disease in humans.
Sexual And Reproductive Behavior
Female sooty mangabeys have sexual swellings that are maximally tumescent near ovulation and typically have a gestation length of ~160â170 days while typically, higher ranking males would be able to identify estrous females and monopolize mating opportunities, it is suggested that dominant males cannot entirely control access to estrous females, perhaps because swellings allow females to precipitate paternity confusion through polygynandry. However, despite these potential counterstrategies against infanticide through paternity confusion, cases of infanticide have been recorded, usually shortly after a change in alpha males or with the introduction of new, immigrant males.
In captivity, recently deposed alpha males have been observed carrying their infants in the presence of newly ascended alpha males, typically following aggression by the new alpha male towards the infant. In habituated sooty mangabeys, immigrant males new to the group have been found to attack infants, who would be defend by their mothers. In this context, resident adult males who had mated with the mother were found to defend the mother and infant from the attacking immigrant male.
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What Is The Treatment For Hiv
Antiretroviral therapy is the use of HIV medicines to treat HIV infection. People on ART take a combination of HIV medicines every day.
ART is recommended for everyone who has HIV. ART prevents HIV from multiplying, which reduces the amount of HIV in the body . Having less HIV in the body protects the immune system and prevents HIV infection from advancing to AIDS. ART cannot cure HIV, but HIV medicines help people with HIV live longer, healthier lives.
ART also reduces the risk of HIV transmission. A main goal of ART is to reduce a persons viral load to an undetectable level. An undetectable viral load means that the level of HIV in the blood is too low to be detected by a viral load test. People with HIV who maintain an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to their HIV-negative partner through sex.
Prevalence Of Conspiracy Beliefs
According to Phil Wilson, executive director of the Black AIDS Institute in Los Angeles, conspiracy theories are becoming a barrier to the prevention of AIDS since people start to believe that no matter what measures they take, they can still be prone to contracting this disease. A 2005 study suggests this makes them less careful when engaging in practices that put them at risk because they believe there is no point. “Nearly half of the 500 African Americans surveyed said that HIV is man-made. More than one-quarter said they believed that AIDS was produced in a government laboratory, and 12 percent believed it was created and spread by the CIA … At the same time, 75 percent said they believed medical and public health agencies are working to stop the spread of AIDS in black communities.”
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Activism By Aids Patients And Families
Also in 1982, Michael Callen and Richard Berkowitz published How to Have Sex in an Epidemic: One Approach. In this short work, they described ways gay men could be sexual and affectionate while dramatically reducing the risk of contracting or spreading HIV. Both authors were themselves gay men living with AIDS. This booklet was one of the first times men were advised to use condoms when having sexual relations with other men.
At the beginning of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s, there was very little information about the disease. Because AIDS affected stigmatized groups, such as LGBTQ people, people of low socioeconomic status, sex workers and addicts, there was also initially little mass media coverage when the epidemic started. However, with the rise of activist groups composed of people suffering from AIDS, either directly or through a loved one, more public attention was brought to the epidemic.
How Is Hiv Not Spread
HIV is not spread by:
- Air or water
- Mosquitoes, ticks, or other insects
- Saliva, tears, sweat, feces, or urine that is not mixed with the blood of a person with HIV
- Shaking hands hugging sharing toilets sharing dishes, silverware, or drinking glasses or engaging in closed-mouth or social kissing with a person with HIV
- Drinking fountains
- Other sexual activities that dont involve the exchange of body fluids .
- Donating blood
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Hiv Originated With Monkeys Not Chimps Study Finds
Researchers have found new clues to the deadly disease’s origins.
Scientists now say that the simian immunodeficiency virus in chimpanzees , which is believed to have been transmitted to humans to become HIV-1the virus that causes AIDSdidn’t start its life in chimps.
Instead, it was a product of separate viruses jumping from different monkey species into chimps, where they recombined to form a hybrid virus, according to a new study.
Researchers believe the chimpanzee virus is a hybrid of the SIVs naturally infecting two different monkeys, the red-capped mangabey and the greater spot-nosed monkey . Chimps eat monkeys, which is likely how they acquired the monkey viruses. The hybrid virus then spread through the chimpanzee species, and was later transmitted to humans to become HIV-1.
The study suggests striking parallels between SIV infection of chimps and HIV infection of humans. Just as chimps acquired viruses from two different sources, humans are infected by two distinct AIDS viruses: HIV-1 and the less virulent HIV-2, which humans acquired from sooty mangabey monkeys.
“Because of the similarity between chimpanzees and humans, any virus that successfully adapts to spreading among chimps would be a candidate for a further jump to humansa potential HIV-3,” said Paul Sharp of the Institute of Genetics at University of Nottingham in England, who led the study.
Overcoming One Of The Worst Human Pandemics
It has been 36 years since the world was first introduced to the term AIDS . The epidemic was defined by fear and death as HIV infection rates and AIDS-related deaths grew throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Thanks to scientific advances and programs targeting those in need, 2005 marked a turning point as the number of AIDS related deaths peaked. Although patients in developed countries can expect near-normal lifespans, HIV/AIDS remains a heavy burden in sub-Saharan Africa.
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Case Definition For Epidemiological Surveillance
According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in 2008, a team led by Robert Shafer at Stanford University School of Medicine discovered that the gray mouse lemur has an endogenouslentivirus in its genetic makeup. This suggests that lentiviruses have existed for at least 14 million years, much longer than the currently known existence of HIV. In addition, the time frame falls in the period when Madagascar was still connected to what is now the African continent the said lemurs later developed immunity to the virus strain and survived an era when the lentivirus was widespread among other mammals. The study was hailed as crucial, as it fills the blanks in the origin of the virus, as well as in its evolution, and could be important in the development of new antiviral drugs.
In 2010, researchers reported that SIV had infected monkeys in Bioko for at least 32,000 years. Previous to this time, it was thought that SIV infection in monkeys had happened over the past few hundred years. Scientists estimated that it would take a similar amount of time before humans adapted naturally to HIV infection in the way monkeys in Africa have adapted to SIV and not suffer any harm from the infection.