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Origin of HIV Traced To Wild Chimps

by Medindia Content Team on May 30, 2006 at 2:10 PM
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Origin of HIV Traced To Wild Chimps

According to the study conducted by an international team of researchers it was found that HIV in wild chimpanzees in southern Cameroon. The researchers analyzed the feces sample collected from the chimpanzee found from forest floors in Africa. They collected 599 fecal samples from 10 forest sites. They found that the simian immunodeficiency virus which affects the chimpanzees had a close resemblance to HIV-1, one of the strains affecting humans.

The study's lead author Beatrice Hahn, a virologist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham said that it is important to confirm the origin to understand the virus's history and future. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said that this would later help us to clearly point out the stage when it jumped from chimpanzee to man. The author said that fecal samples reveal only the genetic material. The researcher said that they are further going to investigate the origins of another HIV group, called group O and find out any other possible disease that might have been transmitted to humans.

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