This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

A General Overview Of The Human Immunodeficiency Virus

2113 words - 8 pages

1. INTRODUCTION

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) forms part of the genus Lentivirus, which itself forms part of the family Retroviridae. The virus is the cause of the disease called Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), which primarily results in a decline in the hosts immune system, making the host susceptible to life-threatening infections and diseases. HIV may be sub-divided into two separate types namely, HIV-1 and HIV-2. The difference between the two is mainly that HIV-1 is more easily transferred then the transfer rate of HIV-2, while the rest of the symptoms, characteristics, and outcomes are approximately the same. The virus occurs as a free floating virus particle as well as within infected immune cells such as CD4+ T-cells.

2. DISEASE PROGRESSION

Below is a General overview of how one could describe the progression of HIV

ACUTE INFECTION

CLINICAL LATENCY

AIDS



Figure 1: Overview of disease progression

The acute infection stage is often defined by acute retroviral syndrome (ARS), which is characterised by fever, lymphadenopathy, pharyngitis, skin rash, myalgias, and other common flu-like symptoms. These symptoms generally start occurring within the first 2-4 months of infection but could take up to 3-6 months to show. This stage of diagnosis is often written off as the common flu therefore necessary measures are not taken and a crucial point of defence against the HIV-1 virus, from a medical perspective, is overlooked.

Clinical latency, also known as asymptomatic HIV infection, is characterised by a lack of symptoms and an apparent healthy CD4+ T-cell count. The HIV-1 virus is still present and active during this period but a relatively stable viral load is maintained. This period is said to last up to 8 or more years but may vary from person to person.

Towards the end of the clinical latency period there is an increase in the viral load as well as a decrease in the CD4+ T-cell count. The progression of this period results in AIDS. The official diagnosis of AIDS is when the CD4+ count drops below 200/mm3. At this stage of infection the body becomes extremely vulnerable to opportunistic infections/diseases that ultimately result in death.

3. T CELLS AND EVASION OF THE VIRUS

T helper cells, which form a fundamental component for HIV-1’s means of infecting the human body, can be described as a subgroup of white blood cells (lymphocytes). The T helper cells are essential in the proper functioning of the adaptive immune system; the aspect of the immune system that creates immunological memory once initially being exposed to a specific pathogen and therefore providing immunity against the same pathogen if it recurs. Upon maturity, the T-helper cells express the surface protein CD4 and they themselves are referred to as CD4+ T-cells. The relationship between HIV-1 and T-helper cells is that HIV infects mature T-helper cells (CD4+ T-cells). The increasing infection of the CD4+ T-cells...

Find Another Essay On A General Overview of The Human Immunodeficiency Virus

Human Immunodeficiency Virus Research Essay

581 words - 2 pages HIV also known as Human Immunodeficiency Virus is a disease, which is obviously caused by a virus. HIV invades your T-cells and uses them to make more replicas of itself. This specific disease can only affect people. HIV/AIDS invades the immune system by damaging vital cells that battle off disease and infection. A damaged immune system cannot protect you. AIDS, also known as Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, which is the final and fatal

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus: Treatment and Drugs

1629 words - 7 pages myths and confusion about this disease, and in this paper I’m going to discuss what HIV and AIDS are, as well as its impact it’s making around the world. Although there is no cure for this disease there are ways that your chances of contracting it are decreased, as well as medical treatments that you can receive to slow the progression. The human immunodeficiency virus; better known as HIV, was discovered by researchers looking for the cause of AIDS

An Analysis of Human Immunodeficiency Virus

1953 words - 8 pages An Analysis of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Introduction In 1983, scientists led by Luc Montagnier at the Pasteur institute in France, first discovered the virus that causes AIDS. They called it lymphadenopathy-associated virus (LAV). A year later, Robert Gallo and Marvin Reitz of the United States, confirmed the discovery of the virus and they named it human T lymphotrphic virus type III (HTL V-III). In 1986

HIV: Detailing The Human Immunodeficiency Virus

1104 words - 5 pages Like a powerful army it has conquered more than half of the world. Its reckless and swift battalion, although microscopic in size, claims nearly three million lives each year. Although by title it is known as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), it is known to all as one of the human body's deadliest enemy. At its core, HIV is a disease that weakens the body at the heart of its defense: its immune system, thereby making it difficult to fight any

The Genetic Variation of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus and its Impact on Human Populations

2511 words - 11 pages shows that immunodeficiency viruses have been impacting mammals even before the HIV virus emerged even as much as a million years ago, and that the viruses simply co-evolved depending on the available host (Brown and Holmes, 1994). This is a distinct theory and there is not as much research on this theory. Other unsupported theories of origin include biological warfare, human experimentations gone wrong, and other controversial theories that state

Describe immune responses to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and discuss recent advances towards development of a safe protective vaccine against HIV

2015 words - 8 pages ). CD8+ CTL are the dominant effector cells responsible for defending the host against viral infections. They recognise and lyse virus-infected cells following binding of the T cell receptor to a viral peptide presented by a MHC class I molecule on the infected cell (Merigan et al., 1999). The MHC type of an individual thus plays a major role in determining whether an individual will generate a CTL response to a given epitope. Presentation of viral

Deforestation: A General Overview

3091 words - 12 pages ). Around the world there are 25 terrestrial hot spots. These hot spots are please where species that do not have a high geographical range live in harmony with human activity. These hot spots are vital to global biodiversity, because such a concentrated amount of species are in these locations. For example, there are about 300,000 flowering plant species around the world, these hotspots are home to 133,000. These 133,000 flowering plants, can

General Overview of the Republic Debate

1051 words - 4 pages Our present constitution reflects Australia's status as a self-governing colony within the British Empire. The constitution links us to the British parliament as a British Governor General (appointed by the Queen to represent herself in Australia) is our head of state and he has specific executive and reserve powers.After the Imperial Conference of 1926, our autonomy in internal and external affairs has been acknowledged and the Governor General

The Human Immune Virus

1172 words - 5 pages The Human Immune Virus The Human Immune Virus is a virus that attacks the immune systems allowing for opportunistic infections to enter and weaken the host. The main target of this virus is the CD4 T-cells of the immune system that commonly fight infections within the body. I have chosen this topic because of the readily available bulk of information concerning its origin, and route of transmission as well as treatment methods and diagnostic

A general overview of Maxine Hong Kingston's "the Woman Warrior" done for an english class

1072 words - 4 pages Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior is a book of blending cultures, and woman's rights. It vaguely ties five short stories and anecdotes to these themes. Kingston puts to use, a lot of symbolic figures in the book, and Chinese folk tales. The whole book revolves around the author, and her struggles with her gender, and nationality. The book starts out centered around Kingston's aunt and her baby in a story titled "No Name Woman", as told to

The Human Papilloma Virus Exposed

2593 words - 10 pages truth about HPV. So, what is HPV? HPV stands for Human Papilloma Virus. This consists of a double stranded DNA virus which infects epithelial cells, such as skin and mucus membranes. People faced with HPV risk genital and oral warts, benign lesions, as well as cancers of the mouth, throat, or genitalia. HPV spreads through sex (this includes vaginal, anal, and oral sex) and is considered to be an STI (sexually transmitted infection). On a

Similar Essays

The Effects Of The Human Immunodeficiency Virus

702 words - 3 pages Human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, compromises an individual’s immune system, allowing for easier destruction of the human body by simple bacteria and viruses, eventually causing Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, or AIDS. It effectively causes the human body to fight itself, and it is therefore one of the most debilitating diseases known to man. 6,300 people worldwide die of HIV/AIDS complications every day. That means that in the 30

Symptoms Of The Human Immunodeficiency Virus

1717 words - 7 pages The Symptoms of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus Human Immunodeficiency Virus has left a deep imprint on citizens affected today. The first recognition of AIDS occurred in the 1980’s and informed Americans to be more careful of their sexually activity. Some symptoms were similar to the common cold but were taken seriously after it lead to deaths. People assumed that HIV was spread by sitting on toilet seats or even hugging. The truth was that

The Pathogenesis Of Human Immunodeficiency Virus

2012 words - 9 pages The human immunodeficiency virus, known more commonly as HIV or by the syndrome it ultimately leads to the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDs, is caused by a RNA retrovirus.1 Morphologically, the virus appears spherical in shape and is enveloped made from two layers – both being primarily built using lipids taken from host cell membranes.2 Specifically, human cell membranes are taken up by the virus as it buds from the host cell2 after

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (Hiv) Essay

3242 words - 13 pages Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) attacks the immune system that severely compromises a person’s ability to ward of infections and other diseases (1). When the virus has progressed to a stage where the body is no longer able to fight the infection, the individual will be diagnosed with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). Transmission occurs through the person to person contact, more specifically in cases where the virus is transmitted