Structure of HIV genome ‘decoded’
We are also beginning to understand tricks the genome uses to help the virus escape detection by the human host
Scientists say they have decoded the entire genetic structure of HIV-1 - the main cause of Aids in humans.
They hope this will pave the way to a greater understanding of how the virus operates, and potentially accelerate the development of drug treatments.
HIV carries its genetic information in more complicated structures than some other viruses.
The US research, published in Nature, may allow scientists the chance to look at the information buried inside.
HIV, like the viruses which cause influenza, hepatitis C and polio, carries its genetic information as single-stranded RNA rather than double-stranded DNA.