Researchers identify new strain of HIV

A scanning electron microscope image that’s been digitally colorized depicts a single red-colored H9-T cell that was infected by numerous mustard-colored HIV particles

A scanning electron microscope image that’s been digitally colorized depicts a single red-colored H9-T cell that was infected by numerous mustard-colored HIV particles

For the first time in almost 20 years, a new strain of the virus has been identified.

According to the World Health Organization, about 36.7 million people in the world live with HIV. The findings were published Wednesday in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes.

"This discovery reminds us that to end the HIV pandemic, we must continue to out think this continuously changing virus and use the latest advancements in technology and resources to monitor its evolution", study co-author, Dr. Carole McArthur, a professor in the department of oral and craniofacial sciences at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, said in a statement. The first, HIV-1, has four versions - Groups M, N, O and P. Group M is responsible for most HIV cases worldwide, and it is this version that Subtype L is related to.

U.S. scientists at the medical device and healthcare major Abbott labs discovered a new strain of HIV virus, the company has announced.

"It's actually misleading to describe genetic diversity from the [Democratic Republic of] Congo as a new subtype because the only useful meaning of the term "subtype" would come from identification of a lineage of the virus that has spread significantly beyond Central Africa," he said. The third sample found in Congo was collected in 2001 as a part of a study aimed at preventing mother-to-child transmission of the virus. The third, collected in 2001, was hard to sequence at that time because of the amount of virus in the sample and the prevailing technology.

Next generation sequencing technology is now allowing researchers to build an entire genome at higher speeds and lower costs. In order to utilise this technology, Abbott scientists had to develop and apply new techniques to help narrow in on the virus portion of the sample to fully sequence and complete the genome, the company said.

"We're making this new strain accessible to the research community to evaluate its impact to diagnostic testing, treatments and potential vaccines".

Rodgers compared the 2000 strain to a "needle in a haystack" and the new technology is like using a magnet to pull the needle out.

Researchers hope identifying new viruses like this one will help ensure new pandemics are stopped.

Notícias recomendadas

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.