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Aids Report Essay, Research Paper

In some parts of the world there are still wars being fought and dictators in power. There are societies which consider themselves at the peak of evolution and progress. They are able to create state of the art automobiles, luxurious homes, efficient and organized industries, complex computerized machinery and atomic weapons. Many societies are governed by a democratic system which herald a belief in freedom. All societies, regardless of their political and economic makeup, are also ruled by a special class of dictators; these dictators are unseen to the naked eye, and are invincible. These invisible tyrants are microorganisms. Underdeveloped countries, technologically advanced countries, and those in between are at the mercy of microorganisms, which come in many forms – viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. The most dangerous of these forms is the virus. Some viruses, such as the common flu, are considered to have a fairly detrimental capacity. The flu can incapacitate a human for several weeks with various symptoms such as bodily soreness, fever, bronchial complications, and even pneumonia. But while these conditions can be painful and frightening, we are usually confident that proper medications and rest will take care of the matter. There is a much more severe and indiscriminate tyrant, with enormous corrupting influence, capable of infiltrating all of civilization. Scientifically, it is a submicroscopic pathogen consisting of a particle of nucleic acid, enclosed in proteins, and able to replicate only within a living cell. Socially, it is responsible for an enormous amount of chaos and fear in the world today, and pronounces the human fault of ignorance. This complex and confusing king of all tyrants is called Human Immunodeficiency Virus, or H.I.V. H.I.V. is a retrovirus. Retroviruses are commonly identified in many animal species, but H.I.V. and its variants, such as HTLV I, HTLV II, HTLV III are among the rare retroviruses found in humans. It is transmitted through blood, semen, and vaginal secretions.H.I.V. is a retrovirus of the Lentivirus group and is the etiologic agent of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). AIDS was first recognized as a disease syndrome in 1981; H.I.V. was identified as its cause in 1984. Coincidentally, Lymphadenopathy-Associated Virus (LAV) isolated by French researcher Dr. Montgnier, (HILV-III) isolated by Dr. Gallo and AIDS Related Retrovirus (ARV) isolated by Dr. Levy in the U.S. were all found to be identical – and to be associated with AIDS. The virus is now known universally as HIV. HIV antibodies were found in serum drawn in parts of Africa in the early 1970, leading many investigators to believe that the disease originated in Africa, spreading to the Caribbean, and then to the United States. Two strains of HIV subsequently have been identified: HIV-1, which is predominantly isolated in clinical AIDS and found in central Africa and other regions in the world, and HIV-2, which is generally limited to western and Central Africa and has not demonstrated the virulence of HIV-1. A likely origin of HIV strongly suggests foul play. AIDS first appeared in Equatorial Africa; the earliest evidence of its presence on the African Continent dates from a plasma sample drawn in 1959 in Kinshasa, Zaire (at that time, it was known as Leopoldville, the Belgian Congo). A process called genetic sequencing, which tracks the evolution of a virus by measuring genetic changes, can read the molecular history of a disease, verifies the appearance as accurate. And according to Gerald Myers, the Federal Government chief expert in genetic sequencing, HIV dates from about 1960, assuming it arose from a single common ancestor. Knowing the approximate time the HIV virus appeared in humans, a closer look at what was occurring in Medical History between 1932 – 1960 is necessary. Between 1932 and 1950, Dr. Koprowski, Dr. Jonas Salk and Dr. Albert Sabin were separately performing initial developments for the Polio vaccine. The one-two punch of “Polio Shots” was developed by Dr. Salk and later, between 1961 and 1962, Dr. Sabin developed the oral vaccine which effectively eradicated Polio in developed countries and The Invisible Tyrants. In some parts of the world there are still wars being fought and dictators in power. There are societies which consider themselves at the peak of evolution and progress. They are able to create state of the art automobiles, luxurious homes, efficient and organized industries, complex computerized machinery and atomic weapons. Many societies are governed by a democratic system which herald a belief in freedom. All societies, regardless of their political and economic makeup, are also ruled by a special class of dictators; these dictators are unseen to the naked eye, and are invincible. These invisible tyrants are microorganisms. . Underdeveloped countries, technologically advanced countries, and those in between are at the mercy of microorganisms, which come in many forms – viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. The most dangerous of these forms is the virus. Some viruses, such as the common flu, are considered to have a fairly detrimental capacity. The flu can incapacitate a human for several weeks with various symptoms such as bodily soreness, fever, bronchial complications, and even pneumonia. But while these conditions can be painful antors to believe that the disease originated in Africa, spreading to the Caribbean, and then to the United States. Two strains of HIV subsequently have been identified: HIV-1, which is predominantly isolated in clinical AIDS and found in central Africa and other regions in the world, and HIV-2, which is generally limited to western and Central Africa and has not demonstrated the virulence of HIV-1. A likely origin of HIV strongly suggests foul play. AIDS first appeared in Equatorial Africa; the earliest eGreen monkey; it is called SIV (Simian Immunodeficency Virus). Some versions of SIV are only 40% similar in genetic structure to the chief AIDS causing virus HIV-1, but other versions of SIV monkey virus are virtually indistinguishable from some human variants of HIV-2, the second virus that causes AIDS in humans and mainly afflicts western Africa. Interestingly enough, no detail is known about which species of monkey kidney were used as medium to develop the polio vaccine. The majority of the researchers involved in the Koprowski Congo Project are no dead. The few that are still alive cannot recall what kind of monkey kidney were used in between 1957 to 1960. Dr. Koprowski, who still works at the Wistar Institute at Philadelphia, claims he is not sure either, and cannot produce a single document describing which species was used to make his vaccine. In 1991, researcher Robert C. Bohannon requested samples of Koprowski’s, Salk’s and Sabin’s seed stock (frozen cultures) to check for contaminating monkey viruses. Salk and Sabin both complied with this request, however, Koprowski never responded. An investigation by the Food and Drug Administration has netted similar results. Scientists have raised the suspicion that there is a connection between the development of the polio vaccine using monkey kidneys as a medium and present-day HIV. Is there enough insinuating information to assess the origin of this disease? Should Koprowsky be held responsible for the origin of AIDS or, at least, as an accessory to its origin? It is difficult to render such judgment due to the complex circumstances, and the lack of information and medical expertise available. However, it is certain that a more detailed investigation is warranted. The possibility that Koprowski used SIV-infected cultures cannot be overlooked. Koprowski’s desire to secure a place in the Medicine Hall of Fame is acknowledged in the medical community, and it is evident that he accelerated the fine tuning of his vaccine by using mentally deficient and underprivileged children as guinea pigs in the process. His methods are suspect because of his lack of response to the World Health Organization. Could such a mistake or lack of consideration be the latest sin of human ego responsible for the 15,000,000 people that will be terminally infected with AIDS by the year 2000? Currently, this invisible tyrant is so dominant that our basic values of “Make Love not War” have been twisted into an anxious cry of “Make Love and Die”. This disease is causing a great deal of pain and sorrow. Weneed to reason and evaluate the truth of the matter and to adapt to a way of life in order to minimize further casualties. If we declare war on HIV, educate in preventing the spread of this disease, and avoid stigmatizing and discriminating based on misinformation, we are well on our way to at least neutralizing HIV. Moral awareness should also be increased in an effort to have better use of the education we possess. This includes those in the medical profession. At this juncture, the chance to find a cure for retroviruses, especially the HIV virus, are less likely than it is for the virus to evolve into a non-deadly form. Perhaps HIV will mutate to a less virulent state, so that it coexists with humans as silently as SIV does with African green monkeys. Perhaps then it will come to be considered one of the lesser, invisible tyrants.


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