I saw this show on PBS a while back. It was really interesting. Plus they were able to reseach this by going to a small village in England where the families have never moved for like 600 years and they have the genealogies of them all. So they were able to trace the genetics back to survivors of the plague...I remember in particular the story of one mother who buried her whole family as they died, but was not affected herself...Delta-32AIDS and the black death
: a new PBS documentary connects HIV and the plague through people like Steve Crohn, whose ancestors' immunity to the black death has made them resistant to HIV
Few people can say with certainty that their ancestors had immunity to the black death that devastated Europe in the Middle Ages. New Yorker Steve Crohn can. What's more, the genes he inherited from those fortunate forebears may have made him largely immune to HIV.
Featured on "Mystery of the Black Death," the October 30 episode of PBS's Secrets of the Dead series, Crohn, 55, is a deep-voiced, no-bullshit freelance editor--and a survivor from the generation of gay New Yorkers swept away by the earliest wave of AIDS in the 1980s. Crohn's lover at the time, Jerry Green, was the fifth person in the United States reported to have died from AIDS complications. All but a handful of the couple's friends also succumbed to the scourge.
He eventually learned that he has a genetic mutation called Delta 32--a "defective" genotype that prevents his being infected by HIV-1, the most common strain of HIV. It's not a happenstance that Crohn takes lightly. "This has a spiritual meaning to me for a couple of reasons," he reflects. "I hate people saying `I feel blessed'--I think that sounds so narcissistic."http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1589/is_/ai_94079748