The Beginning of the Killer Disease – History of AIDS
The history of AIDS, the dreadful disease, goes back to the 20th century. The United States of America began to investigate with the help of CDC, Centre for disease control around 1931. First African Americans were secretly tested for AIDS. They also tested AIDS in sheep. During 1951, the 1st world conference on AIDS was held and US began to investigate the cause of the epidemic disease. There were no recorded cases prior to 1957. Only during 1962 year, creation of special virus program, Operation–X was launched.
From 1963 onwards, every year ` Special Virus Program ‘was conducted. Tests are conducted for Lymphoma, the other name for AIDS. Slim disease was spotted in African countries such as Zaire, Uganda and Tanzania in late 1970. The United States and Haiti had a similar pattern of disease as in Africa, in 1980.
Stanford Mycoplasma Lab gave their first presentation of papers on AIDS, “Viral Infections in Man Associated with Acquired Immunological Deficiency States.” The primary scientist, Dr. Thomas Merigan was the consultant to the special virus program. The disease at that time did not have a name. Therefore, different groups referred to it in different ways. The CDC generally, referred to it by symptoms like lymphadenopathy which has swollen glands. Also, called as GRID i.e., gay-related immune deficiency, AIDS i.e., acquired immunodeficiency disease. This is the history of AIDS.
Causes and Spread of AIDS
From 1980 – 1982, South California researchers inferred that the disease could have been caused by a sexually transmitted infectious agent i.e., homosexuals, heterosexuals, blood transfusions or vertical transmission from mother to child and exposure to unsterilized needles.
Approximately, 452 cases registered from 23 states were diagnosed a disease due to sexual transmission, by the centre for disease control. Only during 1982, CDC first properly defined as AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). HIV and AIDS had also been detected in other parts of the globe, among sex workers causing fears that the disease would curb the entire globe under its iron claws.
First Death Causes Realization of AIDS
In 1981, a child about one and a half year old, who had received multiple transfusions of blood and blood products died from infections related to AIDS. This case provided clearer evidence that AIDS was caused by an infectious agent, and created awareness about the safety of the blood supply. Also, the CDC reported the first cases of possible mother to child transmission of AIDS.
By the end of 1982, many more people were taking notice of this new disease, as it was clearer that a much wider group of people was going to be affected.
It was also becoming clear that AIDS was not a disease that just occurred in the USA. There were separate reports of the disease occurring in a number of European countries also have AIDS epidemic.
In Asia, UK, West Germany and Denmark, the majority of people with AIDS were homosexual. Many had a history of sex with American nationals. However, experts are skeptical that AIDS will spread as rapidly among heterosexuals, as it has among homosexuals.
Today, this killer disease has spread beyond boundaries and every country is finding new ways to educate people about AIDS and prevent it.