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HIV Origins

HIV Pandemic Likely Originated in Kinshasa, Spread Via New Transportation Routes

Kinshasa, in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo, was likely the focus of early HIV-1 transmission beginning in the 1920s, leading to the wider global pandemic starting in the 1960s as railroad and river transportation became more widely used, according to a study published in the October 3 edition of Science.


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HIV Ancestor in Monkeys Older than Previously Believed

Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) -- the precursor to HIV that infects non-human primates -- may be much older than experts previously thought, according to a report in the September 17, 2010 issue of Science. The new calculation, based on SIV strains found on an isolated island off the coast of Africa, suggests that the virus has existed for at least 32,000 to 75,000 years.

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