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The Origins of AIDS

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More than 20 years after the AIDS epidemic started, we still do not know its origins. We know for sure that AIDS was born from contact between humans and chimpanzees infected by the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), a virus very similar to HIV (human immunodeficiency virus). But where, when and how did the devastating contact occur?

Many believe that the answer is hidden in the research undertaken by scientist Hilary Koprowski to find a cure to the polio epidemic. Between 1957 and 1960, Koprowski injected his experiemental vaccine into almost one million Africans. To manufacture his vaccine, Koprowski had to use monkeys, and evidence proves that he used chimpanzees.

With fingers pointed squarely at it, the scientific community is torn by dissension. This award-winning documentary suggests that as scientists tried to rid the world of polio, they may have caused an epidemic that has killed millions worldwide. As the scientific community's ethical responsibilities are called into question, the debate over the origins of AIDS rages on.

2003, 91 min 33 s