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HIV Uses Several Strategies To Escape Immune Pressure

A study of how HIV mutates in response to immune system pressure by Emory Vaccine Center researchers shows that the virus can take several escape routes, not one preferred route.

The results are online and scheduled for publication in the September issue of the journal Public Library of Science Pathogens.

The human immune system has the ability to temporarily overpower HIV in early infection. Recent research has shown that most newly infected patients develop neutralizing antibodies. These are blood proteins that glob onto the virus and would allow patients to defend themselves ā€“ if they were facing only one target.

The problem: HIV's ability to mutate, disguising itself enough to get away from the antibodies. HIV eventually wears down the immune system into exhaustion.
 
 

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