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PLOS Science Wednesday: Hi reddit, my name is Joel and I published a PLOS Pathogens study investigating whether viral genetic sequences of HIV-1 are similar between sexual and social networks in New York City – Ask Me Anything!
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Hi Reddit, My name is Joel Wertheim and I am an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego. My research focuses on the molecular evolution of RNA viruses, like HIV. In my lab, I am particularly interested in figuring out how to translate insights from HIV evolutionary biology into practical public health action. We recently published a study ‘Social and Genetic Networks of HIV-1 Transmission in New York City’ in PLOS Pathogens. In this study we asked HIV-infected individuals to name their sexual partners and injection drug-using partners. When these partners were also infected with HIV, we investigated whether their viruses were genetically similar enough to support a shared transmission history. Our findings suggest that incorporating HIV genetic sequence data can improve public health activities. I will be answering your questions at 1pm ET – Ask Me Anything!