oa SA Pharmaceutical Journal - Clinical guidelines for antiretroviral management of HIV disease - origins and history of the HIV epidemic : guidelines

Volume 77, Issue 10
  • ISSN : 2221-5875
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1017



Both known species of HIV, viz. HIV-1 and HIV-2 originated in Africa (HIV-1 from Central Africa and HIV-2 from West Africa) as zoonotic infections from primate hosts. Human infection is thought to have been facilitated during the slaughtering of primates for the bush meat trade. About 65% of the global total of HIV infection is located in sub-Saharan Africa, with South Africa having the highest number of persons, 5 to 6 million, living with HIV. HIV-1, which is found through out the world and is responsible for the majority of cases of HIV infection, has been subdivided into 10 subtypes A to J (also known as clades or genotypes); within the South African context, reference to HIV implies HIV-1 subtype C. (See Table I.)

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