- The variety of genes on the planet in viruses exceeds, or is likely to exceed, that in all of the rest of life combined. —Edward O. Wilson In 1993, the number of viruses that infected vertebrates, specifically mammals, was estimated at 1,000,000 and 320,000, respectively.1 By 2012, 219 human virus species had been identified, with 3–4 novel viruses projected to emerge each year from mammalian and avian reservoirs.2 Advances in genetics during the past few decades have facilitated the detection of more and more occult viruses, previously unrecognized within the human genome, the accumulation of which is collectively known as the human virome.
- A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down. —Robert B. Sherman, Richard M. Sherman; 1964 With apologies to Julie Andrews, a spoonful of sugar might be considered child abuse in this modern era of diabetes and obesity. As of 2015, more than 700 million adults worldwide have diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance, and about half of these are unaware of the diagnosis.1 Almost certainly, the glut of type 2 diabetes has been fueled by the expanding obesity epidemic (pun intended). In the United States, the prevalence of obesity tripled from 13% in 1960 to 38% in 2014.
- In 2007, the worldwide prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection was 33 million, with 2.7 million incident cases and 2 million deaths.1 The global burden of CKD in the HIV population is difficult to estimate, but proteinuria is relatively common and is associated with increased rates of death, hospitalization, and AIDS-defining illness.2 Proteinuria, in turn, often predicts the onset of HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) which, untreated, almost always progresses to ESRD. On the other hand, ESRD in HIV-infected patients is no longer a death sentence, and outcomes are favorable for both dialysis and kidney transplantation.