AIDS (Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome)- Transmission, Diagnosis, Prevention

AIDS (Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome)
§ Syndrome means a group of symptoms.
§ AIDS is the deficiency of immune system.
§ Caused by HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), a retrovirus having RNA genome.
§ AIDS was first reported in America (1981).


  • Sexual contact with infected person.
  • Transfusion of contaminated blood & blood products.
  • Sharing of infected needles.
  • From infected mother to her child through placenta.
High risk of getting this infection includes

- Individuals with multiple sexual partners
- Drug addicts who take drugs intravenously
- Individuals who require repeated blood transfusion
- Children born to an HIV infected mother

HIV does not spread by mere touch or physical contact; it spreads only through body fluids.
There is a time-lag (from a few months to many years i.e. 5-10) between the infection and appearance of symptoms.

Life cycle of HIV

HIV enters into body → To macrophages (acts as HIV factory) → RNA genome replicates in presence of Reverse transcriptase to form viral DNA → Viral DNA incorporates into host DNA→ Infected cells produce virus particles → HIV enters into helper T-cells (TH) → Replicates & produce progeny viruses → Attack other helper T-cells → T-cells decrease → Weaken immunity.

Life cycle of HIV
HIV infected person may be infected with Mycobacterium, viruses, fungi and even parasites like Toxoplasma.


ELISA test (Enzyme-linked immune-sorbent Assay).


Anti-viral drugs partially effective. They can only prolong the life of the patient.

Prevention of AIDS

o Educate peoples about AIDS.

o Making blood (from blood banks) safe from HIV.

o Use of disposable needles and syringes.

o Advocating safe sex and free distribution of condoms.

o Controlling drug abuse.

o Regular check-ups for HIV in susceptible population.

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