The Origins of AIDS

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Overview

It is now thirty years since the discovery of AIDS but its origins continue to puzzle doctors and scientists. Inspired by his own experiences working as an infectious diseases physician in Africa, Jacques Pepin looks back to the early twentieth-century events in Africa that triggered the emergence of HIV/AIDS and traces its subsequent development into the most dramatic and destructive epidemic of modern times. He shows how the disease was first transmitted from chimpanzees to man and then how urbanization, prostitution, and large-scale colonial medical campaigns intended to eradicate tropical diseases combined to disastrous effect to fuel the spread of the virus from its origins in L opoldville to the rest of Africa, the Caribbean and ultimately worldwide. This is an essential new perspective on HIV/AIDS and on the lessons that must be learnt if we are to avoid provoking another pandemic in the future.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In the 30 years since the HIV/AIDS epidemic began, questions remain about its origins. Pepin (microbiology & infectious diseases, Univ. de Sherbrooke, Quebec) combines history and epidemiology to build a detailed argument demonstrating how a virus that originated in chimpanzees could jump to humans and eventually become a global epidemic. He examines the social disruption of the colonial and postcolonial eras and identifies urbanization, the migration of young men to cities, and the resulting increase in prostitution as additional catalysts of the disease's spread. He then devotes several chapters to a number of public health programs in Africa that, while intended to combat various diseases, involved injecting large numbers of people with needles and syringes that were not properly sterilized. The last few chapters trace the spread of HIV/AIDS from Africa to Haiti, the United States, and beyond, with special emphasis on the role of the blood and plasma trade. VERDICT Pepin delivers a carefully reasoned academic treatise on the origins of AIDS; recommended for readers interested in the epidemiology of AIDS.—Janet A. Crum, City of Hope Lib., Duarte, CA
From the Publisher
"The language of Pepin’s book is academic, yet easily accessible to a lay, educated readership. Graphics, charts and maps emphasize the text content. The Origins of AIDS offers, for the first time, an in-depth look into the pandemic prior to 1981 and, with that, the missing pieces that complete the story of AIDS." -Alina Oswald, A&U, America's AIDS magazine
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521186377
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/30/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 307
  • Sales rank: 458,262
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Jacques Pepin
Jacques Pepin is Professor and Head of the Infectious Diseases Division, Department of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases at the University of Sherbrooke, Canada, where he is also Director of the Centre for International Health. He has conducted research on infectious diseases in sixteen African countries.
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Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Out of Africa; 2. The source; 3. The timing; 4. The cut hunter; 5. Societies in transition; 6. The oldest trade; 7. Injections and the transmission of viruses; 8. The legacies of colonial medicine I: French Equatorial Africa and Cameroun; 9. The legacies of colonial medicine II: the Belgian Congo; 10. The other human immunodeficiency viruses; 11. From the Congo to the Caribbean; 12. The blood trade; 13. The globalisation; 14. Assembling the puzzle; 15. Epilogue: lessons learned.
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Customer Reviews

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