New, Aggressive HIV Strain Develops Into AIDS Faster

New, Aggressive HIV Strain Develops Into AIDS Faster

February 21, 2020 10 By Jose Scott


Researchers have found an aggressive new strain
of HIV in West Africa they say develops into AIDS much faster than other strains. According to a new study from Sweden’s Lund
University, the strain is a “recombinant” virus, or a combination of two different viruses
that join together in the body to create a completely new virus. (Via Al Jazeera) This particular strain reportedly combines
the two most common HIV strains in Guinea-Bissau, West Africa. (Via KARE) And it’s pretty strong. Scientists say the
new strain can develop into AIDS in just five years. That’s up to two-and-a-half years faster
than either of its parent strains. One of the study’s authors told Medical News
Today, “Recombinants seem to be more vigorous and more aggressive than the strains from
which they developed.” So far, the strain has only been seen in Guinea-Bissau,
but researchers warn it could spread quickly. Previous research has shown recombinant strains
are making their way around the globe faster than other strains, partly due to immigration
to the U.S. or Europe. (Via KTLA) The study’s senior author said, “HIV is an
extremely dynamic and variable virus. New subtypes and recombinant forms of HIV-1 have
been introduced to our part of the world, and it is highly likely that there are a large
number of circulating recombinants of which we know little or nothing. We therefore need
to be aware of how the HIV-1 epidemic changes over time.” (Via Fox News) The study comes just a few days after the
World Health Organization and the European Center for Disease Control announced about
131,000 people contracted HIV in Europe in 2012 — an eight percent jump from the year
before.