Sweet! Scientists Decode The HIV Genome

For the first time ever, researchers have decoded the complete HIV virus genome. This wasn’t an easy feat, because HIV carries its genetic information on RNA instead of DNA which is more complex because it’s 3D. This is a very big deal because now scientists will have a much better understanding of how HIV works. They can zoom in on different pieces of the virus and see which parts do what. Researchers can, hopefully, use this info to figure out why the virus is able to go undetected in the human host for so long and why it’s immune to so many drugs. Scientists also plan to alter or mutate parts of the genome and see if the virus notices. If they can find a mutation that effs up how HIV functions or makes it grow slower, well, that’s pretty exciting. [AFP]

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