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2011: Thirty Years of AIDS

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A Somber Anniversary

It all began on June 5, 1981 -- on paper, at least. That's the day that a medical publication reported an outbreak of Pneumocystis pneumonia among five young, gay men in Los Angeles, Calif. Nobody knew it at the time, but that nondescript, two-page article -- simply entitled "Pneumocystis Pneumonia -- Los Angeles" -- was the first published report on what we now know all too well as AIDS and the virus that causes it, HIV.

In 2011, we mark the 30th anniversary of that report. Throughout the year, HIV/AIDS community members, public officials and the rest of the world will write articles and blogs; will hold events, speeches and vigils; and will reflect back on the past three decades, as well as what the future holds in store for the HIV pandemic and the people who are a part of it. We'll highlight many of those contributions on this page, and add some of our own as well.

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