Detective doctor decodes AIDS mystery

Fourty years ago, the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) first published a report about a cluster of five cases of Pneumocystis jirovecii (formerly Pneumocytis carinii) pneumonia; this syndrome was rare and only found in immunocompromised patients, but were found in otherwise healthy homosexual men in Los Angeles. Since this first announcement of what we now know to be a consequence of AIDS, publications on the scientific, psychosocial, historical, political, economic, and geographic nature of AIDS continue to appear. However, Jacques Pépin, Professor of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (Université de Sherbrooke, Quebec), set himself the daunting task of charting the complete history and evolution of AIDS in a single volume.

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