`Wellcozyme HIV 1+2' used to test for antibodies to HIV in blood samples, England, 1993
This kit allowed the user to test for HIV 1+2 antibodies in blood samples to prevent the transmission of the disease through blood transfusions. HIV 1 is the most common type of infection and also leads to AIDS. This kit allowed the user to test for antibodies in a safe, easy and effective way. Urine, saliva and dried blood spots could also be tested in place of a regular blood sample – especially useful if the person being tested had difficulty in giving blood. The test did not require highly trained personnel or a laboratory and so could be used by anyone with a small amount of training, anywhere.
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Techniques and Technologies:
Glossary: HIV test
HIV tests are used to detect the presence of the human immunodeficiency virus in serum, saliva, or urine. There usually a window time of 22 days (average) between infection and the time that the test can detect infection. There are a wide variety of types of test.
Glossary: blood transfusion
An injection of healthy, donated blood into a patient to raise his or her number of red blood cells. The blood is matched according to type (A, B, O, AB).
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a disease caused by infections resulting from a weakened immune system due to the HIV virus. It leads to failure of the immune system and is usually fatal. It is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that weakens vital cells in the immune system, and leads to AIDS. There are two strands: HIV-1, which leads to immunity suppression; and HIV-2, which is not as potent and is only common in West Africa. HIV is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids.
Molecules produced by the body which attach themselves to the micro-organisms that cause disease and destroy them.
The study of epidemic disease, including its spread, causes and methods of control.