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of HIV-1 is its extensive genetic diversity that emanates mainly from high
mutations. Phylogenetically, HIV can be classified into geographically confined
groups, types, subtypes and circulating recombinant forms (CRFs) that are
however subject to change over time. HIV genetic diversity may partially
explain the observed heterogeneity in HIV prevalence and has also been reported
to impact on viral transmissibility and differential rates of disease progression.
The aim of this review is to present a simple overview of the principles and
concepts of HIV diversity and classification. Tracking the presence of new HIV
strains is not only important for surveillance purposes but is also critical in
facilitating personalized targeted therapy as well as forming the basis for
development of the much anticipated effective vaccines against this scourge.