In the early 1980s, young gay men started coming down with unusual and deadly illnesses, which were eventually attributed to a mysterious immune deficiency—the condition that would come to be known as AIDS. At the end of 1981, around 300 cases of the condition were reported. By the time HIV was discovered in 1984, there were nearly 8,000 AIDS cases in the U.S. alone. Throughout this horrific epidemic, one mystery nagged: who had unleashed this deadly disease? Who was North America's first HIV carrier? It's not who you think.
Finding the Source
"O" vs "0"
Where Did HIV Come From?
Find out how scientists determined that so-called "patient zero" wasn't the first to spread the deadly virus in North America.
AIDS Activist Larry Kramer on the Patient Zero Myth
Hear this LGBT icon talk about the latest news about the virus's origins.
The Science of HIV/AIDS
Discover how HIV invades the body and turns into AIDS.
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