Monday, August 3. 2009ResearchGate Team in News
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Researchers at the University of Rouen, France, have discovered a new strain of HIV in a 62-year-old woman from Cameroon now residing in Paris. Prior to this discovery, three HIV strains were known , all related to the simian virus carried by chimpanzees. This new strain differs from the previous three in that it appears similar to a strain of simian virus found in gorillas. While most likely transmitted directly from gorillas to humans, researchers say it is also possible that it began in chimpanzees, moved into gorillas and then to humans, or perhaps moved directly from chimpanzees to both gorillas and humans. The woman has said that she had no contact with apes or bush meat, which could mean that she became infected with the virus through human contact. The rapid replication of the virus, moreover, indicates that it is adapted to human cells. The prevalence of the strain is yet undetermined, and it could be circulating in western central Africa, according to researchers.
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