Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS, is the most advanced stage of infection with HIV, a virus that attacks the cells of the immune system, and is characterised by the appearance of infections and certain cancers. To date, there is no way of curing this infection. It can, however, be controlled by antiretroviral therapy.
At the end of 2014, according to WHO, the number of people living with HIV was estimated at over 36.9 million. Furthermore, only 51% of those infected by the virus know their status.
World AIDS day, which will be held on 1 December next, is aimed at making the general public aware about prevention and management of the disease.
Inserm researchers are involved in combating this infection on a year-round basis.