HIV/AIDS – Human Population and the Environment

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It has been estimated that by the end of 2008, there were over 36 million people having with HIV/AIDS. Since the epidemic began, an estimated 2,000,000 people have died of AIDS during the end of year 2007.

In India, it has been estimated that the end of 2008 there were over 2.5 million people having with HIV/AIDS. The states of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Manipur are most affected by HIV/AIDS.

What is AIDS?

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AIDS is the short form of the followings:

A-Acquired-because it is a condition one must acquire or get infected with, not something transmitted through the genes.

I-Immune – because it affects the body’s immune system, the part of the body which usually work to fight off germ such as bacteria and viruses.

D-Deficiency – because it makes the immune system deficient (makes it not work properly).

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S-Syndrome – because someone with AIDS may experience a wide range of different diseases and opportunistic infections.

What is HIV?

HIV is the virus that causes AIDS. HIV is the short form of the followings:

H-Human – because this virus can only infect human beings.

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I-Immune deficiency – because the effect of the virus is to create a deficiency, a failure to work properly, with the body immune system.

V-Virus – because this organism is a virus, which means one of its characteristics is that it is incapable of reproducing by itself. It reproduces by taking over the machinery of the human cell.

How HIV Weakens the Immune System

The virus HIV attacks the white blood cells (WBC) of the Immune system which protects the body from infection and disease. HIV enters the T4 cells (helper cell) and reproduces within the cell, and ultimately destroys the genetic system. This damage is permanent. As more and more cells are destroyed, the Immune system-ceases to function effectively thus make it possible for various infections to enter the body.

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