HIV: roots run deeper than we knew

Origin of HIV


I have previously posted a number of articles on “molecular archaeology” of viruses, and how one can use extant sequences, archived tissue samples, or even blood of pandemic survivors to speculate on the origins of specific viruses, of viruses generally, or on the nature of old pandemic strains.Now HIV falls under the spotlight – again – as the 2nd October issue of Nature publishes three articles (one letter, a commentary on it and an independent commentary) on the origins of HIV-1 pandemic strains.I picked up on the first news – evidence for an older-than-previously-thought origin for HIV-1 – via our local paper this morning. Now this is VERY impressive; they usually keep science news for a slow day, and here they were telling us about a Nature paper on the day it was published! Accessing Nature brought up the Nature News commentary by Heidi Ledford, titled “Tissue…

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