Close to three and a half decades ago, in June 1981, aids was first identified as a disease that mortally affects human beings. In 2016, a cure for that disease is still to be found.
It is so difficult to find a cure because the HIV virus constantly mutates, thereby preventing the body's antibodies from fighting it effectively. Since its discovery, around 40 million deaths have been attributed to aids. In 2016, almost as many people are living with the HIV virus. India, with 2.1 million people living with the disease, is the third-most affected country.
Earlier this month. #endHIV launched HIVbeats, a YouTube channel where celebrities, survivors, activists talk about the disease in the hopes of bringing further awareness of its effects. One of the videos in the channel is this gorgeous minimalist dance performance that mimics how the HIV virus enters and infiltrates the body's defences.
Narrated by Academy Award-winning actress Julianne Moore and choreographed by Ryan Heffingon (who worked with pop singer Sia on the music video for Chandelier), the video shows skilled dancers enacting the motions of the virus and antibodies – although it moves from reality to hope in the end. Here, a cure is found, driving the HIV virus away.
In the videos below, members of #endHIV describe an HIV vaccine that has Sudhir Paul, from the University of Texas, has been working on for 15 years. The final proposal will shortly be taken to the USFDA, before commencing human trials.