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Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS, is a

disease entity that has been recognized since 1981. It is caused by

infection with the human immunodeficiency virus, which attacks

selected cells in the immune system and produces defects in

function. This leaves the body open to an invasion by various

infections, which are therefore called opportunistic diseases, and

to the development of unusual cancers. The virus also tends to

reach certain brain cells. Since the first AIDS cases were

reported in 1981, through mid-1991, more than 190,000 AIDS

cases and more than 120,000 deaths had been reported in about

162 countries worldwide. Sub-Saharan Africa in particular

appears to suffer a heavy Berden of this illness. So far there is no

cure or vaccine that exists for AIDS, but scientists belive a man by

the name of Dr. David Ho has discovered a cure. HIV infection

and AIDS represent one of the most pressing public policy and

public health problems world wide.

Definition of AIDS

the U.S Center for disease control has established criteria

for defining cases of AIDS that are based on laboratory evidence,

the presence of opportunistic diseases, and a range of other

conditions. Other complications of HIV infection include fever,

diarrhea, severe weight loss, and swollen lymph nodes. When

HIV-infected persons experience some of the above symptoms but

do not meet full criteria for AIDS, they are given the diagnosis of

AIDS-related complex, or ARC.

Historical Background

In the late 1970s, certain rare types of cancer and a veriety

of serious infections were recognized to be occurring in increasing

numbers of previously healthy persons. First formally described

in 1981, the syndrome was observed predominantly to be affecting

homosexual and bisexual men. Soon thereafter, intravenous drug

users, hemophiliacs, and recipients of blood transfusions were...