Novel Theory Explains Reason behind HIV Infection among African Women

Novel Theory Explains Reason behind HIV Infection among African Women

Africa is an exception when it comes to AIDS as nearly 60% of AIDS cases have been reported among women. A number of studies have been carried out, but the reason behind the higher percentage of women was not clear.

But a recent research carried out by a team of Norwegian infectious disease specialists seems to have an answer. The scientists have made it clear that their explanation has yet to be verified on large scale, if it is correct.

As per the researchers, it is because of a chronic, undiagnosed parasitic disease called genital schistosomiasis due to which African women are most vulnerable to HIV. The infection is mainly caused due to parasitic worms picked up in infested river water.

The disease is marked by sores in the vaginal canal that may act as an entry point for HIV. Secondly, the worms and eggs in the sores attract CD4 cells. But if it is the cause then there is nothing to worry about as there is a drug that can kill the worms and costs just 8 cents a pill.

Now, researchers are trying to know whether that will heal the sores in young women or not. There are some known AIDS experts who have doubted the theory by saying that there are many African women living in urban areas raised far from infested water and they still get diagnosed with HIV.

On the other hand, the idea is getting popular as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the UN and the Danish and Norwegian governments have been helping by offering grants in support.


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