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National Briefing / Nationwide

New HIV strain found in Africa

August 03, 2009|Times Wire Reports

A new strain of the virus that causes AIDS has been discovered in a woman from the African nation of Cameroon.

It differs from the three known strains of human immunodeficiency virus and appears to be closely related to a form of simian virus recently discovered in gorillas, researchers report in today's edition of the U.S. journal Nature Medicine.

The most likely explanation for the new find is gorilla-to-human transmission, said the research team, led by Jean-Christophe Plantier of the University of Rouen, France.

Researchers said the strain could be circulating unnoticed in Cameroon or elsewhere, and the virus' rapid replication indicates that it is adapted to human cells.

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