Canadian researcher traces AIDS to single bush hunter from 1921

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    Oct 22, 2011 9:32 PM GMT
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health/new-health/health-news/canadian-researcher-traces-aids-to-single-bush-hunter-from-1921/article2210046/

    Jacques Pepin isn’t a big name in AIDS research and he toils not in a scientific world capital but in the Quebec regional city of Sherbrooke. Yet this self-effacing professor is getting international buzz for a new book that traces the improbable voyage of the AIDS virus to a single bush hunter in central Africa in 1921.

    Like a scientific detective, Dr. Pepin unearths clues to solve the lingering mystery about the genesis of AIDS – stalking the disease when it silently spread in Africa, decades before it entered the public’s consciousness in the early ’80s.

    “Very little was written about that period,” he said in an interview, “and I found it fascinating.”

    Dr. Pepin’s book, The Origin of AIDS, is gaining attention for some of its surprising conclusions. He collects evidence that the virus spread not only through sexual activity but, crucially, through well-meaning European doctors and nurses fighting tropical diseases in pre-independence Africa.

    They used syringes and needles to inject hundreds of patients a day in medical campaigns against diseases such as sleeping sickness, tuberculosis and leprosy. In the process, Dr. Pepin believes, they helped turn a virus infecting a lone ape hunter in Africa into a global epidemic with some 32 million victims.

    “The chances that this hunter alone could launch an epidemic are very low,” Dr. Pepin said. “But there are all the chances in the world that he went to be treated for a tropical disease and a little HIV stayed in the syringe. Then the next patient was injected with it intravenously.”

    Dr. Pepin got an inkling about the subject from personal experience.

    He spent many years working and living in Africa, first landing there as a 22-year-old Quebec med-school graduate in 1980. During a later stint treating sleeping sickness on a Canadian-funded program in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), he believes he may have inadvertently passed along the AIDS virus himself.

    Electricity failures meant the machines that sterilized syringes didn’t always work; nurses boiled the instruments instead. Dr. Pepin isn’t sure the syringes were properly sterilized, or whether they may have inadvertently passed the AIDS virus from one patient to the next.

    “Honestly, I have no memory of asking myself the question at the time,” he said. “But afterwards, I reflected on what I did in good faith. I realized that maybe I had transmitted a bit of the AIDS virus.” The thought, he said, left him with a sense of “humility.”

    Dr. Pepin’s research over the years also involved testing the blood of older Africans; and he spent years sifting through historical documents on the colonial period – newspapers, records, academic studies – in capitals across Europe. His turning point, he said, came one day in the southern French city of Marseilles. He was poring over medical archives and found a motherlode of original records crammed with painstaking charts and entries outlining the massive use of injections in colonial Africa.
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    Oct 23, 2011 1:50 AM GMT
    I still say the government made it to kill off gay people.
  • pelotudo87

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    Oct 23, 2011 3:08 AM GMT
    Fascinating research. It seems like what people thought would help others may have in fact hurt them as well...
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    Oct 23, 2011 3:16 AM GMT
    So how did the bush hunter get it?icon_confused.gif
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    Oct 23, 2011 3:19 AM GMT
    Minion saidI still say the government made it to kill off gay people.


    too bad the largest population with HIV/AIDS is african americans. icon_lol.gif
  • offshore

    Posts: 1294

    Oct 23, 2011 3:23 AM GMT
    miamimasseur saidSo how did the bush hunter get it?icon_confused.gif


    Eat/ butching monkeys (apes) and got a cut wound where ape's blood mixed with his.
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    Oct 23, 2011 3:42 AM GMT
    Defenseon said
    Minion saidI still say the government made it to kill off gay people.


    too bad the largest population with HIV/AIDS is african americans. icon_lol.gif


    Too bad gay men account for 49% of people living with HIV in the United States. And, for a population that is only a few percent of the total population, it's really too bad.


    icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Oct 23, 2011 3:45 AM GMT
    It's an interesting story. I wonder how accurate his research is? What I mean is, I wonder how accurate the records could be?

    It makes sense that the initial transmission would be more than just sexual. For a single person to sexually transmit it to enough people to become an epidemic seems hard to believe.
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    Oct 23, 2011 10:42 AM GMT
    Animus said
    Defenseon said
    Minion saidI still say the government made it to kill off gay people.


    too bad the largest population with HIV/AIDS is african americans. icon_lol.gif


    Too bad gay men account for 49% of people living with HIV in the United States. And, for a population that is only a few percent of the total population, it's really too bad.


    icon_rolleyes.gif




    Oh dear - where did you get THAT number??!





    Please do not spread misinformation regarding HIV.

    The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women.



    Trevor Leclerc
    Chairman,
    AIDSPEI


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    Oct 23, 2011 11:23 AM GMT
    Upper_Cdn said
    Oh dear - where did you get THAT number??!
    Please do not spread misinformation regarding HIV.
    The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women.
    Trevor Leclerc
    Chairman,
    AIDSPEI



    In the United States? Really?
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    Oct 23, 2011 11:27 AM GMT
    Statistics for the U.S.

    "The CDC estimates that by the end of 2008 there were 490,696 people living with an AIDS diagnoses in the United States and five dependent areas, around 38,000 more than 2006. Since 2000 the annual number of new AIDS diagnoses has remained relatively constant, with an estimated 34,993 in 2009. In total, an estimated 1,142,714 people have been diagnosed with AIDS in America since the beginning of the epidemic.

    During 2009, there were an estimated 42,959 new diagnoses of HIV infection in the 40 states and five dependent areas. Adult or adolescent males accounted for three-quarters of new HIV diagnoses. The main transmission route among males was male-to-male sexual contact (74%), followed by heterosexual contact (14%) and injecting drug use (8%). Among female adult and adolescents, 84.9% were infected through heterosexual contact and 14.8% through injecting drug use.

    Just over 75% of adults and adolescents living with an AIDS diagnosis are men.

    usa-sum-graph.jpg

    usa-summary.jpg

    References
    CDC 'HIV in the United States', July 2010
    CDC 'HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006' MMWR 57(39), 3 October 2008
    CDC 'HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006' MMWR 57(39), 3 October 2008

    I really doubt it has shifted vastly since 2008/2009...
    Thanks anyways Trevor. Please don't point fingers and abuse your title. THAT is dangerous.
    Giving away condoms and information is a vital part of preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS, but it doesn't allow you to make up facts.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:16 PM GMT
    ThePenIsMyTier saidStatistics for the U.S.

    "The CDC estimates that by the end of 2008 there were 490,696 people living with an AIDS diagnoses in the United States and five dependent areas, around 38,000 more than 2006. Since 2000 the annual number of new AIDS diagnoses has remained relatively constant, with an estimated 34,993 in 2009. In total, an estimated 1,142,714 people have been diagnosed with AIDS in America since the beginning of the epidemic.

    During 2009, there were an estimated 42,959 new diagnoses of HIV infection in the 40 states and five dependent areas. Adult or adolescent males accounted for three-quarters of new HIV diagnoses. The main transmission route among males was male-to-male sexual contact (74%), followed by heterosexual contact (14%) and injecting drug use (8%). Among female adult and adolescents, 84.9% were infected through heterosexual contact and 14.8% through injecting drug use.

    Just over 75% of adults and adolescents living with an AIDS diagnosis are men.

    usa-sum-graph.jpg

    usa-summary.jpg

    References
    CDC 'HIV in the United States', July 2010
    CDC 'HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006' MMWR 57(39), 3 October 2008
    CDC 'HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006' MMWR 57(39), 3 October 2008

    I really doubt it has shifted vastly since 2008/2009...
    Thanks anyways Trevor. Please don't point fingers and abuse your title. THAT is dangerous.
    Giving away condoms and information is a vital part of preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS, but it doesn't allow you to make up facts.



    Yes it has and it that demographic shift is growing each day.

    Allow me to put this succintly:

    Because our PRIMARY duty IS EDUCATION, I do not use my title casually and use it when speaking of policy and the most up to date state of research.

    Please consult Canadian AIDS Treatment Exchange most recent bulletins - which we get because of our role as the only AIDS Service Organization in the Province.


    http://www.catie.ca/en/home

    Your charts are valid but note the categories carefully.That line reads 74% of MEN contract from MSM relationships. That is true.

    Latest research distributed by CANADIAN AIDS TREATMENT INFORMATON &EXCHANGE BULLETIN (we receive it bimonthly) continues to report the fasting growing group of new infections are among women.

    IDUs are the next in NEW infections;
    MSM account for the fewest new cases since 2009.


    This is an important metric.

    The total number of cases as captured in 2009 changes radically over time as the RATE of new infectons in women rise concurrent with a steady decline in new cases who are men.

    Continuing along these trends show women will be the majority of people living with HIV within 5-10 years.

    I hope that clarifies the current situation for you.

    It is our JOB to stay current. I also live with HIV. I am intimately invested in remaining current. I've presented my credentials . you do not need to respect them or the access to information that goes with it. I have noticed a lack of respect for specialisation and expertise in your culture - where uninformed opinion is given equal time as experts.


    I am not the expert - my role is communicating the information fed us regularly.
    I read my last bulletin about three weeks ago.

    Just checking.



    Feel free to use any title you have when it is relevant.




    I will also occasionally comment on the rights of the Disabled. Most times just in my private capacity and on very rare occasions as a representative of my political party.

    I am very practised at drawing attention to the capacity in which I speak. In this one I am most definitely speaking from my position as chair - with the attendant information - and legal responsibilities - that go with that.


    I am not clear in what capacity you speak or your expertise but you have presented data charts of a snapshot in time as support for an extrapolated a false conclusion.

    People from ASOs (AIDS Service Orgabnizations) will almost always interject as I have - and immediately offer our credentials to counter well meant but misleading informaton.

    You are welcome to match your credentials with mine so readers who will not click on the CATIE link can decide whether they can accept my quick encapsulation as being more likely to be supported by the data I cited than what I am objecting to.




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    Oct 23, 2011 12:18 PM GMT
    That was a lot of work, kudos, but we are talking about two different countries.

    I was referring to the subject at hand, and the post in question.

    You - simply spouting your own statistics, from your own country. Not trying to demean you, but it doesn't make sense to tell us about Canada without
    a) Telling us your statistics are Canadian
    b) Canada being questioned
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:21 PM GMT
    People, stop arguing and distinguish what you're referring to, prevalence or incidence of HIV infection and AIDS.

    You should have at least 4 categories, each with male/female subcategories.

    And each country has its own (although I wouldn't be surprised if Canada's and USA's are similar) statistics.

    I'm too lazy to look it up right now.
    http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/basic.htm
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:26 PM GMT
    ThePenIsMyTier saidThat was a lot of work, kudos, but we are talking about two different countries.

    I was referring to the subject at hand, and the post in question.

    You - simply spouting your own statistics, from your own country. Not trying to demean you, but it doesn't make sense to tell us about Canada without
    a) Telling us our statistics are Canadian
    b) Canada being questioned



    You did not look at the link did you?

    CATIE is not just cdn stats.


    I mentioned meta studies but perhaps you apparently unfamiliar with the term.


    Meta-analysis (redirect from Meta-study)
    In statistics , a meta-analysis combines the results of several studies that address a set of related research hypotheses. a meta-analyses. ...




    meta studies are studies of studies.

    the Information Treatment Exchange draws on international. data.

    I will further point out that our two countries share the world's longest border and people go back and forth al the time. we are not two separate planets - we intermingle constantly.




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    Oct 23, 2011 12:26 PM GMT
    I don't see any findings posted for 2010, I am guessing it takes a while to compile all of the data... but does this help?


    http://www.avert.org/usa-race-age.htm

    (By the way, my issue was your calling out the person, without factual evidence, The largest number of HIV cases in the US is within women.)
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:28 PM GMT
    Sorry Trevor, it seems men dominate both incidence and prevalence:
    http://www.avert.org/canada-aids.htm

    "The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."

    This statement is false in Canada.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:31 PM GMT
    I'm sorry, but... you can list all the links from your pamphlets all you want, but with the inability to read and understand them, they are worthless. Please don't tell me looking up CREDIBLE sources is dangerous without a fancy title. Fancy titles are dangerous without credibility.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:34 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidSorry Trevor, it seems men dominate both incidence and prevalence:
    http://www.avert.org/canada-aids.htm

    "The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."

    This statement is false in Canada.




    I did not write The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."


    Go read it again.


    What is the difference between what you just wrote and

    The largest number of new HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."




    I will wait while you compare the sentences.

    ....





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    Oct 23, 2011 12:36 PM GMT
    However, Trevor, your statement is true for Africa (where the majority of HIV cases are):
    http://www.avert.org/africa-hiv-aids-statistics.htm

    But Animus was talking about the US.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:36 PM GMT
    Upper_Cdn said
    q1w2e3 saidSorry Trevor, it seems men dominate both incidence and prevalence:
    http://www.avert.org/canada-aids.htm

    "The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."

    This statement is false in Canada.

    I did not write The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."
    Go read it again.
    What is the difference between what you just wrote and
    The largest number of new HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women."

    I will wait while you compare the sentences.


    The difference is that you DOCTORED the second one, without actually updating it on the post.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:36 PM GMT
    Upper_Cdn said
    Animus said
    Defenseon said
    Minion saidI still say the government made it to kill off gay people.


    too bad the largest population with HIV/AIDS is african americans. icon_lol.gif


    Too bad gay men account for 49% of people living with HIV in the United States. And, for a population that is only a few percent of the total population, it's really too bad.


    icon_rolleyes.gif




    Oh dear - where did you get THAT number??!





    Please do not spread misinformation regarding HIV.

    The largest number of HIV cases is not Men who have sex with men, nor is it Intravenous Drug users - it is women.




    Trevor Leclerc
    Chairman,
    AIDSPEI


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    Oct 23, 2011 12:37 PM GMT
    I will accept "I am sorry, I made a mistake"


    I understand if this is the case.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:38 PM GMT
    For all intensive purposes I'm assuming whoever responded to my post is highly uninformed. Thank you whoever posted the nice little article with some statistically accurate information. I posted that in regards to the fact that ill informed American people tend to only associate HIV with gay men.
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    Oct 23, 2011 12:38 PM GMT
    ThePenIsMyTier saidI'm sorry, but... you can list all the links from your pamphlets all you want, but with the inability to read and understand them, they are worthless. Please don't tell me looking up CREDIBLE sources is dangerous without a fancy title. Fancy titles are dangerous without credibility.


    I include my citations.

    If you cannot be bothered to read them, fine.



    you do not ned any title to look yup sorces but you do have to read them - and you habve made it clear you don't.


    I included the link and if you had clickd on it you would have realised your commebt dismissing mt source as "only canadian" wa just wrong.







    q's response shows how overlooking one word completely changes the meaning