HIV viruses

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HIV viruses. Colored Transmission Electron Micrograph (TEM) of the Human Immunodeficiency Viruses (HIV), cause of AIDS. HIV is transmitted through contaminated blood and through sexual contact. Incubation time can vary from six months up to ten years before the full onset of AIDS. HIV specifically attacks T-lymphocytes which are a major component of the human immune system and defense against infectious agents. This disease of the immune system allows other organisms that are normally "harmless" to healthy humans to infect the body. These secondary infections usually lead to death. Magnification: x240,000.

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