HIV and HPV strains
Feb 23, 2014
Hi Dr. Holodniy,
Are there as many HIV strains as HPV strains? Like HPV, are there certain types of strains that are considered more aggressive? That is, are there some strains that are charasterically known to be highly resistant to medications?
Response from Dr. Holodniy
Yes, there are multiple types of HIV-1, so-called subtypes or clades and usually named A through K. They vary by geography, with subtype B being more common in the US and subtypes A and C being more common in African countries as an example. In addition, HIV exists as a family of viruses within a person, so-called quasi-species, and can also recombine to have parts of an A and B virus as an example. So there is much variability. Some strains are HIV drug resistant, and some strains preferentially infect different kinds of cells and can be more aggressive than other strains.
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