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New Clues to the Conundrum of Mother-to-Child HIV Transmission

Medical Xpress

Photo: NIAID

medicalxpress.com

Each year over 150,000 infants worldwide are infected with HIV in the womb, at birth, or through breastfeeding. Why transmission occurs in some cases but not others has long been a mystery, but now a team led by Weill Cornell Medicine and Duke University scientists has uncovered an important clue, with implications for how to eliminate infant HIV infections.

In a study published April 2 in PLOS Pathogens, the researchers found evidence linking mother-to-child transmission of HIV to rare variants of the virus in the mother's blood that are able to escape broadly neutralizing ...