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Study: HIV subtype causes dementia risk

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BALTIMORE (UPI) — U.S. scientists say they’ve discovered patients infected with a specific subtype of the human immunodeficiency virus have an increased risk of dementia.

Johns Hopkins University researchers said they determined HIV Subtype D might be more likely to cause dementia than other subtypes.

HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.

The scientists said their finding is the first to demonstrate the specific type of HIV has any effect on cognitive impairment, one of the most common complications of uncontrolled HIV infection.

The researchers said HIV occurs in multiple forms, distinguished by small differences in the virus’s genetic sequence and designated by letters A through K. Of the 35 million people living worldwide with HIV, the majority live in sub-Saharan Africa, where subtypes A, C and D dominate.

The research, led by Professor Ned Sacktor, is reported in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 8th Sept 2009

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