×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Chimps, AIDS, And Immunity

Hemos posted more than 11 years ago | from the outlasting-it dept.

Science 464

Anonymous Coward writes "Researchers at the Biomedical Primate Research Center in The Netherlands have come up with a theory as to why modern chimps don't develop AIDS and its variants. The chimps in the study were found to share a usually uniform cluster of genes in the area that controls their immune systems' defenses against disease. This lack of genetic diversity suggests that a lethal sickness attacked chimps in the distant past. The theory postulates that approximately 2 million years ago an AIDS-like epidemic wiped out a large portion of the chimpanzee population. Those that survived developed an immunity to AIDS and its variants. If this theory holds true it may explain why some humans who are repeatedly exposed to HIV don't get sick."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

464 comments

52 + 20 = 12 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171447)

slashdot first post math

cherish them

damn FUCK FUCK!!!

It's been 17 seconds since you hit 'reply'!

There's some AC math for you.

Cherish my balls in the name of the .test community.

Monkey skin condoms!! (0, Offtopic)

Unknown Poltroon (31628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171450)

Problem solved.

Hey mods, this is humor, not a troll. See the difference?

Re:Monkey skin condoms!! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171615)

I agree with this post.

aids is a plague from god (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171458)

to kill all faggots and prostitutes. Thats why it wont work on monkeys.

Re:aids is a plague from god (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171715)

to kill all faggots and prositutes. Thats why it wont work on monkeys.
Ahem. Christian logic fails again! There are homosexual monkeys, or have you forgotten?

Re:aids is a plague from god (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171815)

to kill all faggots and prostitutes.

and rape victims and children of rape victims

Re:aids is a plague from god (-1)

Fecal Troll Matter (445929) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171862)

Women who get raped are asking for it. Always wearing skimpy clothing and acting sexy. All guys know 'no' means 'yes'.

3rd p0sticle (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171477)

I have a third p0sticle d00ds!
w00t!

SIV? (3, Interesting)

Maditude (473526) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171481)

Anyone know why the article doesn't mention anything about SIV (Simian "IV" instead of Human
"IV). From what I've read in the past, they are remarkably similar...

Re:SIV? (2)

Peyna (14792) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171552)

What about FIV? Is it related to HIV or SIV at all? I've noticed quite a few commercials on it on TV. (It's the feline version of it I guess.)

FIV causes a similar disease but is different (1)

MasteroftheVoxel (162902) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171645)

FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) causes an AIDS-like syndrome in cats and while it is uncurable it is nowhere near as dangerous to cats
as AIDS is to humans.
In fact, viruses that cause immunodeficiency are quite common in animals and some scientists have
expressed surprise that we didn't have an HIV virus floating around before 25 years ago.

I don't believe FIV is as contagious among cats as HIV is among humans and I think that most cases come from the mother cat giving it to her kittens.

Lastly, FIV does not infect humans. The reason why kittens are tested for it is because many people do not want to adopt a cat that is destined to be plagued with health problems its whole life.

Re:FIV causes a similar disease but is different (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171752)

Googlalia: http://www.google.com/search?q=FIV+cats
Link form [google.com]

Look at the article again... (1)

MasteroftheVoxel (162902) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171585)

It does mention it. Early in the article it says the chimps are immune to "AIDS and its simian variants". That means SIV, too.

It also provides hope (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171482)

I may be stating the obvious here, but think about it: If Chimps are immune to AIDs, then that should help in the road to discovering a cure for humans.

Re:It also provides hope (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171541)

Why would you want to cure AIDS? It's working as planned.

Untrue, look at Africa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171777)

Chimps can't possibly be immune, look at all the chimps in Africa with AIDS! In fact I'd argue that chimps are more susceptible to the disease.

Practicing animal husbandry? (2, Funny)

tomzyk (158497) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171486)

I don't even WANT to know how those sicko scientists are trying to infect those chimps with AIDS...

Re:Practicing animal husbandry? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171576)

By sticking a needle to the monkeys' asses

Re:They use injections of the virus, of course. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171590)

Remember, AIDS is also transmitted by sharing infected needles, so just inject the chimps with HIV extracted from infected human blood.

Re:They use injections of the virus, of course. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171866)

dude, it was a joke. he wasn't seriously asking how it was done.

at least i think so...

Mod -1 Bad Taste (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171848)

Oh wait, this is Slashdot.

unprotected SEX!! (1)

FoolishMartyr (588808) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171487)

great everyone go out and have unprotected sex. It shouldn't be too long before we can engineer a cure!!!

How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (3, Interesting)

Carnage4Life (106069) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171490)

From the Slashdot blurb:

Those that survived developed an immunity to AIDS and its variants. If this theory holds true it may explain why some humans who are repeatedly exposed to HIV don't get sick

What does one have to do with the other? Besides the fact that there is a quote in the article that states
He also said there is no definitive proof linking specific genes with resistance to AIDS in either chimpanzees or humans,
the only way this has a bearing on human immunity is if the submitter is suggesting that those humans with AIDS immunity are evolved from chimps two million years ago which seems highly unlikely.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (2, Informative)

Lshmael (603746) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171581)

I think the article means that because humans and chimpanzees have incredibly similar DNA, a minority of the human population (just like a minority of the pre-epidemic chimp population) has immunity, just like those chimps that survived.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (2)

Marx_Mrvelous (532372) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171591)

You're showing a distinct ignorance of genetics. First of all, we share roughly 97% of our DNS with chimpanzees. Our immune systems are strikingly alike, and we share many characteristics. So, if there were a disease 2 million years ago that removed all but one mutation of this gene in chimps, they could, today, still be resistant. Humans can also have this gene and not be "evolved from chimps" just like we share 97% of our DNA. We just haven't had a catastrophic disease like HIC deicmate our population and concentrate this gene.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (1)

Colin Walsh (1032) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171701)

First of all, we share roughly 97% of our DNS with chimpanzees.

First ICANN removes all public accountability from their organization, and now they're taking away the chimpanzees' ability to serve domain names? When will this madness end!?

-Colin :)

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171718)

First of all, we share roughly 97% of our DNS with chimpanzees.

For those who want this broken down even further, the chimpanzees specifically share Internic with us. The three percent that is shared is AlterNic for humans and ChimpNic for monkeys.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (2)

Mr. Sketch (111112) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171808)

lol. Wow, sometimes spelling errors can be quite humorous:

First of all, we share roughly 97% of our DNS with chimpanzees

Actually I don't think we share any of our DNS servers with chimps, unless you count MCSEs.

haven't had a catastrophic disease like HIC deicmate our population

I was picturing an entire population of humans dying of HICups. *HIC*....*HIC*....*HIC*...<collapses on the floor>, "Well Billy Bob, it looks like anuther one died of that ach eye see virus."

Sorry, I know HIV is not a laughing matter, but I found the mental picture of the 'HIC' virus quite entertaining and thought I'd share. Hmmm, maybe I shouldn't have.

Sharing DNS with chimpanzees (5, Funny)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171832)

First of all, we share roughly 97% of our DNS with chimpanzees.

Hey, now, that may be true, but I don't think ICANN would appreciate you categorizing them thusly.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171603)

Immunity to a disease doesn't spontaneously appear. There are people who are naturally immune, just as there are chimps. Those that weren't immune died. Survival of the fittest.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (3, Insightful)

mshiltonj (220311) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171611)

...the only way this has a bearing on human immunity is if the submitter is suggesting that those humans with AIDS immunity are evolved from chimps two million years ago which seems highly unlikely.

It's relevant by implication only. HIV can do to humanity what the unnamed-disease did to the chimps two million years ago -- wipe out most of us except the few who have a natural genetic resitance to the virus. Then, two million years from now, someone will comment on how our "immunity genes" are very similar.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (1)

mr_z_beeblebrox (591077) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171637)

the only way this has a bearing on human immunity is if the submitter is suggesting that those humans with AIDS immunity are evolved from chimps two million years ago which seems highly unlikely.

Actually, no the article is nicely laid out by the nice journalist who really has no clue what he is writing about. However, a sickness or epidemic does not(usually) cause a resistant gene to be created. Rather it culls those which are not immune. In other words chimps with gene x didn't die and the others did. Since we share a common lineage (note they are not our ancestor) with chimps (98 % genetically identical) it is natural to speculate that some humans may possess gene x.

Re:How Does It Explain Human Immunity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171869)

Or there is some other genetic anomaly that the resistant humans have which has the same effect as the one the chimps have.

Since human and chimp DNA is so similar, someone should be looking to see if the humans who are resistant have the same set of genes as the chimps.

Phbbt, science! (1, Funny)

gosand (234100) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171493)

Yeah right. Science can supposedly prove anything. Give me good ol' fashioned dogma any day. We all know that AIDS was created by God to wipe out those who haven't been saved. How could these chimps have been wiped out 2 million years ago when the Earth is only 10,000 years old? Huh smart guy?

(dang, my sarcasm meter is pegged, I had better stop now)

Re:Phbbt, science! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171842)

They could have been God last batch of experiments... Wonder why the human ancestors didn't caught the last massive disease too ?

Re:Phbbt, science! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171853)

Actually, AIDS is the rapture.

Those hatefilled fundamentalists "Christians" think they've got God fooled. They're wrong.

Not so, a counter-argument (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171495)

The truth is chimps [206.244.69.51] and monkeys [206.244.69.51] are the most likely to be infected with AIDS.

I believe this is called... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171502)

"Survival of the fittest". I'm pretty sure this is the notion behind some religious groups and why they decline healthcare for their sick and dying -- let the weak ones die, and the strong ones live on to create more strong ones.

Light on Details, of course... (2)

bhsx (458600) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171514)

But the theories are sound... suppose we were all wiped out from HIV/AIDS. Those with this built-in immunity might be the only ones to survive; leaving the future of humankind AIDS tolerant. Makes sense; but again, light on details means there's not much from this article to probve or disprove.

Testing? (1)

paulumz (31769) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171515)

Where can I get my DNA analyzed or scanned or whatever they do. I'd love to know what makes me up.

Cure with Chimps? (1)

Valiss (463641) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171516)

So could this lead to a cure? I mean it's great and all that chimps are immune, but can that technology/gene/whathaveyou be used in some sort of cure? I'm sure it sounds "me-me-me" oriented, but I wan't a cure for humans. Is there a biologist in the house?

Re:Cure with Chimps? (2)

NoMoreNicksLeft (516230) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171633)

Wow, I can't wait til science comes up with a cure for something that could have been contained or prevented, so that I can continue with my self-destructive and socially harmful behavior!!!

Re:Cure with Chimps? (0, Offtopic)

susano_otter (123650) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171699)

... but I wan't a cure for humans.

Me? I'm just waiting for a cure for fucking apostrophe misuse.

Re:Cure with Chimps? (1)

Valiss (463641) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171826)

Bah I made a little mistake and ya jump on me for that? Sheesh!

Re:Cure with Chimps? (1)

susano_otter (123650) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171859)

Fair enough. I apologize, and withdraw my jump. I was amazed by the extreme nature of the offense, and in a moment of weakness I acted foolishly.

Deusberg (1)

coderodent (178600) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171520)

Look up Dr. Duesberg. The AIDS epeidemic is not what you think anyway.

Re:Deusberg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171681)

I agree absolutely! For those who are curious the URL is http://duesberg.com/

Genetic Engineering Time! (1)

Snarfangel (203258) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171523)

Time to import that gene cluster into the human genome.

Of course there will be side effects, but who *doesn't* want a handy tail, cozy body hair, and the ability to pop a cold one with one's feet? ;-)

Re:Genetic Engineering Time! (1)

rmadmin (532701) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171620)

I want a tail! I want a tail! That way I could whap my son when he's being a brat, but not have to take my hands off the keyboard or the TV remote.

Re:Genetic Engineering Time! (1)

mr_z_beeblebrox (591077) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171675)

Of course there will be side effects, but who *doesn't* want a handy tail

I don't and neither do chimps since we are both TAILLESS apes!!

AIDS, mortality, and timing. (5, Insightful)

Buck2 (50253) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171537)

My uncle died of AIDS (or complications thereof) just a few years before the cocktail treatments started showing efficacy in extending HIV+ person's lifespans.

I was a little young, so I didn't realize it until much later, but this was a pretty "in your face" demonstration of how timing, in the sense of where you are in the course of human technological development can have a serious impact on your expected longevity.

There are, of course, the obvious facts that a long, long time ago your life-expectancy would be 30 years, whereas now (depending on where you live) it might be near 80. This is a development over thousands of years, though.

It's a bit shocking to think that if my uncle had developed his complications a few years later he might still be around today. I've always taken solace in the fact that the same could be said of my father's friends who were drafted for Vietnam, or my grandfather's friends who died in Korea, etc.

Illnesses seem a bit "different", though. Wars are arguably preventable, illnesses kinda just happen. I'm hoping and hoping that startling achievements in fighting "natural causes" will reach some sort of threshold where we might be expected to live for a ridiculously long time. :)

Longevity treatments, anyone?

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171660)

Sorry about your uncle. :(

But one of the trends to note in the past...

As soon as a cure or effective treatment for one disease is created, somehow a bigger badder uglier disease pops up somewhere.

Are there disease mongers trying to invent a new disease? This could start a landslide of debate for all the conspiracy theorists, the theologist, etc.

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (1)

Buck2 (50253) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171775)

Sorry about your uncle. :(

Thanks, but it was a while ago. The family has dealt (for the most part, I guess).

As soon as a cure or effective treatment for one disease is created, somehow a bigger badder uglier disease pops up somewhere.

I remember a standup routine, although I can't remember the comic (Eddie Murphy?), that went something along the lines of (although probably pretty far from this recreation),

"So, you had chlamydia and syphilis, which you can clear up with a shot now. Then there's herpes which will keep you sick forever but at least it won't kill you. Now there's this AIDS thing ... yeah, death-from-sex. Soon enough there's gonna be some disease where you stick your dick in there and BOOM it's just gonna fucking EXPLODE."

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (2)

gwernol (167574) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171841)

As soon as a cure or effective treatment for one disease is created, somehow a bigger badder uglier disease pops up somewhere.

A good example of this is cancer. Cancer was uncommon in the 19th. century. By the end of the 20th. century it was the primary killer in Western countries.

Was there a sudden upsurge in cancer? Did more virulent "strains" suddenly appear? No. It simpler. Back in the 1800's few people died of cancer because most of the population died of other diseases. Cancer is (with some exceptions) a disease of old age. If you die of tuberculosis in your early twenties as millions did back then, you won't survive to die of the cancer that would have killed you when you hit 60.

Many of these "new" diseases are more prominent now because we have eliminated so many other diseases that used to cull the herd of mankind.

Of course there are exceptions. HIV/AIDS may be one - it appears to have evolved into a mass-transmitable and often fatal disease in recent memory.

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171749)

Was your uncle a cock sucking DiCk LIckiNg, Ass TsKinG, FuDgE PaCkInG, BUTT PiRaTe?

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171800)

in the sense of where you are in the course of human technological development can have a serious impact on your expected longevity.

Since when humans were not under technological development? Sometimes it's just pure luck (or lack thereof). Maybe just after the day you've died from some dreadful disease, some miraculous treatment is found.....

HAHAHA your uncle was as GAY as Robert Conrad!!!!! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171805)

I know it to be true.

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (4, Insightful)

American AC in Paris (230456) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171831)

Illnesses seem a bit "different", though. Wars are arguably preventable, illnesses kinda just happen.

Meaning absolutely no disrespect to either you or your late uncle, AIDS does not "kinda just happen"; nor, for that matter, do many other illnesses.

The vast majority of AIDS cases stem from sexual activity and shared needles. It is conceivable that, given enough education, focus and effort, AIDS could be effectively eradicated in the span of a couple of generations with technology that is currently available. AIDS is not something that just kinda turns up in your system one fine morning; is an epidemic that can be effectively prevented with some very basic safeguards.

Again, I say this neither to inflict pain nor insult on you and your family. Rather, I say this to combat the notion that AIDS "just kinda happens", a view that will cause more harm than comfort in the long run.

Re:AIDS, mortality, and timing. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171865)

Your uncle did not just "get" sick by chance. He sinned and is now punished....

As far as humans go.. (1)

MisanthropicProggram (597526) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171547)

You virologists/MDs out there, please educate me on this. I realy curious.

From what I understand, the humans who were exposed to HIV and didn't get sick were able to acheive this because their lymph nodes in their rectum "grabbed" the virus and kept it from really infecting them. Whereas people who didn't have this ability got sick.

So maybe a few centuries from now, the humans alive will have this "immunity" from AIDS too?

Re:As far as humans go.. (1)

Gilgaron (575091) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171691)

The only way we'd have universal immunity is if everyone not immune died, but we could see the immunity gene spread to most people if enough people are killed by AIDS. If, say, here in the US people with AIDS live long enough to reproduce before dying because of cocktails then there is no selective pressure.

Or more interestingly, we could all go in for a genetic vaccine. Instead of killed virus or antigen dependent vaccines, we could receive genetic alteration to make ourselves immune. That might be difficult in an adult depending on what cells need to be treated, but in theory you could make your children immune to HIV by treating them when they were a few cells.

unusually uniform cluster of genes (2, Informative)

non (130182) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171563)

the poster got this part wrong. it is an unusually uniform cluster. from the article : "Chimps show more genetic variation than humans in all areas - with this one exception, which is seriously condensed," said Dr. Ronald Bontrop, who led a Dutch team that worked with statisticians from the University of California.

They don't get AIDs.... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171566)

..Because they don't fuck like homos!

Re:They don't get AIDs.... (1)

NegativeCreep (585005) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171836)

Actually, apparently, they do, er, umm... "fuck like homos!"

I remembered watching a show about chimpanzees and they mentioned that males and females both, exhibited homosexual behavior.

I did a quick search, and found this:

But recent study shows that the pygmy chimpanzee behavior is very different--copulation takes place throughout the cycle and homosexual behavior is common.

I got that from here: The New York Review of Books. [nybooks.com]

I'd look for more, better sources, but I really should be working...

Re: why a conserved region? (1)

QuincyFree (147705) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171569)


It seems unusual to me that most of the rest of the genome displays much genetic diversity and yet the conservation of this particular region is interpreted as evidence of a population bottleneck. Strong selection at this site seems more consistent with this data than a past extinction, which should cause an overall paucity of sequence variation.

I can't find the article on PNAS so I can't figure out if the article is just reporting the results inaccurately. Does anyone have a link?

It's heartening to see HIV research being conducted in primate systems. Very little is understood about naturally-occuring resistence to HIV.

Rather simple (5, Informative)

praedor (218403) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171572)

It is actually rather simple why certain people can be repeatedly exposed to HIV and not become productively infected. HIV requires its target cells have two cell surface proteins in order to infect it. One is the basic CD4 T cell receptor. The other is one of two different types of chemokine receptor. There is the CXCR4 and CCR5 receptors. The names derive from a common amino acid motif found in these receptors in most people: for CXCR4 it is cysteine-any amino-cysteine-arginine. For CCR5 it is cysteine-cysteine-arginine. Most of the people who appear immune to the infection contain a mutation in the CCR5 receptor (I'm not familiar with the CXCR4 receptor vis a vis mutations and infection resistance). Thus, HIV can bind to CD4 but because of the mutation in CCR5 it cannot complete the process and fuse with the cell. No fusion, no infection.


This common form of resistance doesn't require any cluster of genes nor any mysterious genetic variation or evolutionary alteration.

Re:Rather simple (2, Funny)

josh crawley (537561) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171647)

Let me get this straight....

That CCR5 is like the 'cells' sendmail?! Hot DAMN!

Btw, can you give me the DNA diff so I can patch it? Thanks ;P

Re:Rather simple (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171712)

Most of the people who appear immune to the infection contain a mutation in the CCR5 receptor . . . . This common form of resistance doesn't require any cluster of genes nor any mysterious genetic variation or evolutionary alteration.


Ok, this may be a stupid question, but isn't a mutation a genetic variation or evolutionary alteration? How else but a person's genes would determine whether or not the particular mutation is expressed?

Re:Rather simple (2)

praedor (218403) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171838)

Yes, as a simple mutation it has a potential contribution to evolution of humans. If HIV were to _really_ get widespread and kill lots of people to the point that most remaining people were mutant CCR5 carriers, then they would be the ones to most successfully pass on their genes to the next generation and future humans would be immune...evolution in action.


I simply meant that I don't think one HAS to look at a complex cluster of genes in simians and infer that this is the sort of thing that would have to happen to humans for them to evolve immunity like the simians. For us, all we need in this case is a relatively minor variation in one protein (two if you really want to get decent protection: CCR5 and CXCR4 - and hope that the mutations dont screw something else up in the process of giving you immunity to one virus).

My question is... (1)

mr_z_beeblebrox (591077) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171573)

What humans are repeatedly exposed to the HIV virus and why? It should not be medical personnel as they use proper protective measures and thus are not counted as "exposures" so who is it?

Re:My question is... (2)

garcia (6573) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171658)

people who are involved w/those that are known to be infected w/HIV. These people (for whatever reason) continue to have intercourse w/their mates and do not contract the disease.

Re:My question is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171764)

What humans are repeatedly exposed to the HIV virus and why?

Certainly not the stereotypical slashdot reader.

Re:My question is... (2)

JohnnyCannuk (19863) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171809)

There are a group of prostitutes in Kenya that have done their "job" for years, watching their co-workers and customers die of AIDS and yet have never developed the desease or tested positive to HIV. They have clearly been exposed over and over, yet show no signs of infection.

This theory could explain it....

Prostitutes in Africa (1)

MasteroftheVoxel (162902) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171839)

I don't remember what country it was specifically, but a certain group of prostitutes in Africa who were repeatedly exposed to the HIV virus (there clients had an extremely high rate of AIDS) never got the virus.

One thing that wasn't mentioned was that if the prostitutes retired and then returned to work at some point in the future and became re-exposed they had lost their resistance and became infected.

I think this was on slashdot a few months ago.

Subject test group? (5, Funny)

broken.data (603253) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171580)

I completely misread the last line as why some humans who are repeatedly exposed to HIV don't get sex. We are talking about code-monkeys, right?

Why some don't get sick? (1, Interesting)

buzzdecafe (583889) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171604)

Several long-term non-progressors, as they're called, have this in common: They didn't take toxic antiretroviral medications. (ref [healtoronto.com])


The science surrounding HIV-AIDS is about as corrupt as the Renaissance popes: From the fraud of Gallo, to the profiteering of Burroughs-Wellcome (AZT), to the dubious "Quantitative" PCR technique . . . But billions of dollars keep AIDS, Inc. propped up.

Where does that come from? (1)

fungus (37425) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171613)

"If this theory holds true it may explain why some humans who are repeatedly exposed to HIV don't get sick."

If you do not have HIV and expose yourself repeatedly to HIV, you probably dont know about it!

Where does the idea of some people being immune to HIV come from? Have anyone heard about someone who slept without any protection, many times, with a girl who had HIV, and got away with it?

How does this apply to the slashdot crowd... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171614)

I gotta believe a large majority of the slashdot population fantasize about prolonged unprotected sex.

Limited genetic diversity (2)

Animats (122034) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171626)

Some other species have been through a near-extinction event, and come out with very little genetic diversity. Cheetahs, for example. It's not clear what that means, but it's been seen before.

chimp == human (0, Redundant)

buzban (227721) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171634)

this might actually do us some good, as chimps and humans are 99% alike as DNA is concerned...

Perhaps some misunderstanding... (5, Informative)

broken_down_programm (597416) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171671)

"Those that survived developed an immunity to AIDS and its variants. " ...Uh, IANA genetecist, but I THINK the way it works is that those that ALREADY had the peculiar genetic combination that would equip them to survive SIV where the ones that SURVIVED. Through their offspring this combination came to prevail in the population today...

Aids?? (0, Flamebait)

FatherOfONe (515801) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171676)

Oh they mean GRIDS.

I do know that a small amount of the population who gets GRIDS are not gay, and I feel deeply sorry for anyone who aquires the HIV virus, but lets not forget where this came from.

The original name should not have been changed.

One thing I noticed... (3, Insightful)

Liora (565268) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171679)

The end quote of the article says If the theory of an ancient chimp epidemic would hold true for humans, he said, "the implications are pretty scary."

Just how are the implications pretty scary? Chimps weren't doing anything to stop the spread of the disease, we are. We're educating people and trying to encourage safer practices. The chimps who were almost wiped out didn't have a 7th grade health class where they learned that condoms can significantly lower their risks of contracting SIV. We do. The places where HIV has become an epidemic are the ones where there aren't such classes. They need them.

Janet Reno (1)

macdaddy (38372) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171706)

Then I guess that means Jan "The Man" Reno can't get AIDS.

Dickey Chaney (2)

FreeUser (11483) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171868)

Then I guess that means Jan "The Man" Reno can't get AIDS.

No, but Dick "Stalin in Training" Chaney sure can, and since he's been bending most of America over about a year now, there's a good chance the rest of us over here will bet it too. Our only hope is that he keeps reaming us out with the erstwhile Bill of Rights, rather than his own appendage, but I don't think thats something any of us can count on.

I worked at the NCI (2, Informative)

muyThaiBxr (141607) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171717)

About 5 years ago I worked at the National Cancer Institute, which is part of the NIH in the US. (Ft Detrick, Frederick, MD if you wanted to know) While I was there, my boss, (I was a labtech) did some analysis, and found out that a gene called CCR5 could be in people with a 32 base pair deletion. When this deletion was present from both the mother's chromosome and the father's, the person with the mutated form of the gene was basically immune to HIV even through repeated exposures. This was about 5 or 6 years ago, so I'd say OLD NEWS!

Re:I worked at the NCI (4, Interesting)

anzha (138288) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171757)

Ethical questions aside, So how difficult would it be to purposefully change this one gene in an embryo?

What else does this gene impact? Obviously it has been changed naturally in some people, so it may not have that much of an impact...

I propose a trade? (2)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171766)

I say we trade the language [bbc.co.uk] gene [nature.com] for their AIDS immunity gene.

It would be beneficial to both species. Well, the language gene is arguably more trouble than it's worth, but these monkeys are dumb and will probably fall for it if we throw in a few extra bananas to sweeten the deal.

We are all in the same suborder haplorhini! (1)

tkny (260036) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171797)

Chimps and Humans are in the same order of primates haplorhini. Humans are descendants of family hominidae (which is the modern man extinct). If apes/chimps are resistent to AIDs and it's variants, we should very well be immune to AIDs and it's variants as well as we belong to the same suborder.

For some reason, the research seems to repeat Darwin's theory of Evolution...no?

Prostitutes in I believe Nigeria (1)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171817)

have been repeatedly exposed to the AIDS virus with no infection, in case you were wondering (saw that in the Washington Post last year).

4-7 millions years ago. not 2. (2, Informative)

theirpuppet (133526) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171818)

best estimates are 4-7 million years ago, our ancestors split off from the ancestors of modern apes.


2 million years ago, something happening to the ancestor of modern Chimpanzee isn't going to affect us, unless our ancestors were also involved.


duh! i wish these people would do more research before making such crap as 'it may explain why some humans who are repeatedly exposed to HIV don't get sick.'

In a related study... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4171827)

It was determined that Anonymous Cowards (ACs) who think they know it all get Hoof and Mouth disease via constantly sticking their feet in their mouths, especially after having it stuck in their asses for several months prior. Dr. CmdrTaco [cmdrtaco.net] was quoted as saying "ACs are prone to disease more so than /. users who post under their own IDs. ACs have a tendency to divert power from their immune systems into their facial region, specifically their mouths. This diversion weakens both their immune systems and their ability to make any sense on a human level." He also noted a shift in AIDS cases from homosexuals and IV drug users to ACs, mostly due to "Sitting on each other's thumbs and rotating."

Punctuated Equilibrium (3, Interesting)

theCat (36907) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171833)

That's what Niles Eldredge and Stephen Jay Gould called it. Basically, evolution by totally getting your ass kicked. No, it doesn't really apply to humans, we're outside the flow of evolution for all practical purposes. We evolve via understanding, not genetics.

Shared DNA (1)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 11 years ago | (#4171846)

So if we share like 99% of our DNA with chimps and other primates, does that mean that the immunity gene is somewhere in that missing 1%, and that people who show some measure of immunity are more chimpy than the rest of us? :D
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...