Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Highly infectious variant of HIV identified in Netherlands

Researchers in the Netherlands have identified what they describe as a highly virulent variant of HIV that has been circulating in the European nation since the 1990s, they said in an analysis published Thursday by the journal Science.

Based on blood samples collected from 109 infected adults in the country, those with the strain have nearly six-fold higher levels of the virus in their systems than people with other forms, the data showed.

They also had lower levels of antibodies against the virus and increased “infectivity,” meaning they have more of the virus in their systems and may be more likely to spread it to others, the researchers said.

“Viruses can and do evolve to be more virulent, even those that have been infecting humans for more than a century,” infectious disease expert Joel Wertheim, who authored a commentary on the findings, told UPI in an email.

“Although this variant appears more virulent and transmissible, the same public health approach of testing, linkage to care and rapid provision of antiretroviral drugs are still our best options,” said Wertheim, an associate adjunct professor at the University of California-San Diego.

About 38 million people globally have been infected with HIV, according to the World Health Organization.

Although the number of new HIV infections in the United States has declined in recent years, about 35,000 people across the country test positive annually, estimates. is a site that provides access to U.S. government HIV and AIDS information derived from several dozen agencies.

The Dutch researchers identified 109 people with a “distinct strain” of HIV they called the “subtype-B HIV-1 VB variant” among more than 6,600 participants in an ongoing national study of the virus and its effects.

By the time the people in the study were diagnosed, they were vulnerable to developing AIDS within two to three years, the researchers said.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

This is a faster progression than what is seen with other HIV strains, which normally take up to 10 years to develop into AIDS, assuming the infected person does not receive treatment, according to

However, the new strain does not necessarily pose a “public health crisis,” given that it still responds to currently available treatments and does not appear to weaken the effectiveness of pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, drugs designed to prevent infection, Wertheim said.

“I am not particularly concerned about the impact of this, or similarly variants, undoing the work to end the epidemic in the U.S.,” Wertheim told UPI.

“The variant characterized in this new study responds like other HIV strains to antiretroviral therapy, and I expect PrEP would be effective against this variant, as well,” he said.





You May Also Like

Viral Videos

ARKANSAS — New videos posted to social media show the moment a girl was shot by her boyfriend’s side piece while confronting him for...


Girl Accidentally Shoots Her Cousin In The Head On Facebook Live And Then Commits Suicide After Killing Him.. Police are looking into the case...


Wow a Mom couldn’t hold her on so she put her teenage daughters on a grown women. Watch below: Advertisement


“Seven incarcerated men were charged in an attack last month at Essex County Correctional Facility that left a 22-year-old jailed there in critical condition,...


Cardi B LEFT The Industrie Asking Questions After Saying This, Young Blue RESPONDS Subscribe to our backup channel … Advertisement

Celebrity News

Snoop Dogg Gives Homeless Man Huge Donation. Watch below: Advertisement

Young Dolph

Wow! Young Dolph’s Allege K*llers Goes Live. Calls For Soulja Boy & Enjoys 10 Seconds Of Fame. Watch below: Advertisement


Instagram Harlem legend Alberto “Alpo” Martinez tossed baggies of heroin out of his truck window before he was killed in a hail of bullets...


Cardi B Can’t Believed What’s Happening After Offset Allegedly Get Bann£d From New York By Nicki Husband Kenneth petty ? Advertisement