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Date: March 2, 2009
Downloads: Word Doc | PDF Doc | Listening
Audio: 2:00 - 935KB - 64kbps
Online Test: Recreate the text.
   
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Breaking News English.com's e-Book

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THE ARTICLE

HIV virus a step ahead of body’s defences

A group of American and British scientists have discovered that the HIV virus is cleverer than they thought. Their research found the virus adapts very quickly to keep a step ahead of the body’s immune system. Their conclusions make it very clear that finding a vaccine is a huge challenge. One of the reasons for this is because the virus has many faces. The researchers believe the virus creates 14 different “escape routes” when it is attacked. This means the virus can adapt itself quickly and easily to beat any vaccine. Professor Philip Goulder of Oxford University calls this “high speed evolution”. He says: "Even in the short time that HIV has been in the human population, it is doing an effective job of evading our best efforts."


 
 

The research team analyzed data from more than 2,800 HIV-infected patients across five continents. They found the virus is adapting differently with different races. This makes the virus similar to separate armies, all adapting to their different environments. It is possible every HIV-infected person might need his or her own unique vaccine. American researcher Dr. Richard Kaslow warned “the challenge ahead in vaccine design is formidable”. Another American, Dr. Bruce Walker, said: “It's very clear there’s a battle going on between humans and this virus, and the virus is evolving to become unrecognized by the immune system." HIV has killed 25 million people worldwide. An estimated 33 million currently live with the virus.


 


 

WARM-UPS

1. VIRUSES: Walk around the class and talk to other students about viruses. Change partners often. After you finish, sit with your partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

scientists / being clever / immune system / vaccines / challenges / escape routes / analyzing data / continents / armies / unique / formidable things / battles / evolving

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. KILLERS: How can we stop the world’s major killers? Talk about solutions with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote.

Killer

Solutions

Barriers to your solutions

HIV/AIDS

 

 

Wars

 

 

Poverty

 

 

Traffic accidents

 

 

Smoking

 

 

Crime

 

 

4. VACCINE: Students A strongly believe scientists will never find a vaccine for HIV; Students B strongly believe scientists will find a vaccine one day. Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. HUGE CHALLENGES: Rank the following into which is the biggest challenge for the world. Talk about your rankings with your partner(s). Change partners.

____  a cure for HIV/AIDS

____  melting ice sheets

____  obesity

____  drugs

____  banks that work

____  violence in societies

____  computer viruses

____  corruption

6. IMMUNE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘immune’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

Scientists found the HIV virus is not as clever as they first believed.

T / F

b.

Scientists think it will be quite easy to find a vaccine for HIV.

T / F

c.

The virus has 14 different ways to escape the body’s immune system.

T / F

d.

HIV has affected humans for tens of thousands of years.

T / F

e.

The research was carried out on HIV-infected people in the USA only.

T / F

f.

The virus reacts the same with everyone, regardless of skin colour.

T / F

g.

A scientist believes there is no single vaccine for everyone.

T / F

h.

More people have died from HIV than those who live with it today.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

1.

discovered

a.

obvious

2

adapts

b.

defeat

3.

huge

c.

found

4.

beat

d.

examined

5.

evading

e.

individual

6.

analyzed

f.

changes

7.

need

g.

steering clear of

8.

unique

h.

presently

9.

clear

i.

enormous

10.

currently

j.

require

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one. combination is possible):

1.

the HIV virus is cleverer

a.

quickly and easily

2

keep a step ahead of the body’s

b.

huge challenge

3.

finding a vaccine is a

c.

unrecognized

4.

the virus can adapt itself

d.

is formidable

5.

an effective job of evading

e.

than they thought

6.

2,800 HIV-infected patients across

f.

live with the virus

7.

the challenge ahead in vaccine design

g.

our best efforts

8.

there’s a battle

h.

immune system

9.

the virus is evolving to become

i.

going on

10.

33 million currently

j.

five continents

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

A group of American and British scientists have discovered that the HIV virus is __________ than they thought. Their research found the virus adapts very quickly to keep a step ahead of the body’s __________ system. Their conclusions make it very clear that finding a vaccine is a huge __________. One of the reasons for this is because the virus has many faces. The researchers believe the virus __________ 14 different “escape routes” when it is attacked. This __________ the virus can adapt itself __________ and easily to beat any vaccine. Professor Philip Goulder of Oxford University calls this “high speed evolution”. He says: "Even in the __________ time that HIV has been in the human population, it is doing an effective job of evading our __________ efforts."

 

 

 

means
challenge
best
short
cleverer
creates
immune
quickly

The research team analyzed __________ from more than 2,800 HIV-infected patients across five __________. They found the virus is adapting differently with different races. This makes the virus similar to separate armies, all adapting to their different environments. It is __________ every HIV-infected person might need his or her own unique __________. American researcher Dr. Richard Kaslow warned “the challenge __________ in vaccine design is formidable”. Another American, Dr. Bruce Walker, said: “It's very clear there’s a __________ going on between humans and this virus, and the virus is evolving to become unrecognized by the immune system." HIV has __________ 25 million people worldwide. An estimated 33 million currently __________ with the virus.

 

 

ahead
continents
vaccine
killed
data
live
possible
battle

LISTENING:  Listen and fill in the spaces.

A group of American and British scientists have discovered ______________ is cleverer than they thought. Their research found the virus adapts very quickly ______________ ahead of the body’s immune system. Their conclusions make it very clear that ________________ is a huge challenge. One of the reasons for this is because the virus has many faces. The researchers believe _______________ 14 different “escape routes” when it is attacked. This means the virus can adapt itself quickly and ______________ any vaccine. Professor Philip Goulder of Oxford University calls this “high speed evolution”. He says: "Even in the short time that HIV has been in the human population, it is doing ________________ evading our best efforts."

The research team analyzed data ______________ 2,800 HIV-infected patients across five continents. They found the virus is adapting differently with different races. This makes the ______________ separate armies, all adapting to their different environments. It is possible every HIV-infected person might need ______________ unique vaccine. American researcher Dr. Richard Kaslow warned “the challenge ahead in ______________ formidable”. Another American, Dr. Bruce Walker, said: “It's very clear ______________ going on between humans and this virus, and the virus is evolving to become unrecognized by the immune system." HIV has killed 25 million people worldwide. An estimated 33 million ________________ the virus.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘step’ and ‘ahead’.

step

ahead

 

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • group
  • step
  • clear
  • faces
  • easily
  • short
  • five
  • races
  • unique
  • ahead
  • clear
  • 33

STUDENT VIRUS SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about viruses in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

VIRUSES DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘virus’?

c)

Are you surprised about what you read in this article?

d)

What three adjectives would you use to describe HIV?

e)

Do you think scientists will find a vaccine one day?

f)

How much effort do you think governments should put into HIV and AIDS prevention?

g)

What do you know about HIV? What does it mean?

h)

Do you think schoolchildren should learn about the dangers of HIV?

i)

Would you like to be a scientist working on an HIV vaccine?

j)

What do you think of the expression “high-speed evolution”?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

What viruses do you think are the most deadly and the most scary?

c)

What makes the HIV virus so difficult to find a vaccine for?

d)

What would happen if every HIV-infected person needed his or her own unique vaccine?

e)

What’s the most formidable challenge you’ve faced?

f)

What was the last virus you caught?

g)

Has your computer ever had a virus?

h)

Do you think all viruses will disappear in the future?

i)

What do you think about the numbers at the end of the article?

j)

What questions would you like to ask the researchers?

LANGUAGE

A group of American and British scientists have (1) ____ that the HIV virus is cleverer than they thought. Their research found the virus adapts very (2) ____ to keep a step ahead of the body’s immune system. Their conclusions make it very (3) ____ that finding a vaccine is a huge challenge. One of (4) ____ reasons for this is because the virus has many faces. The researchers believe the virus creates 14 different “escape routes” when it is attacked. This means the virus can adapt itself quickly and easily to beat (5) ____ vaccine. Professor Philip Goulder of Oxford University calls this “high speed evolution”. He says: "Even in the short time that HIV has been in the human population, it is doing an effective job (6) ____ evading our best efforts."

The research team analyzed data from more than 2,800 HIV-infected patients (7) ____ five continents. They found the virus is adapting differently with different races. This makes the virus similar (8) ____ separate armies, all adapting to their different environments. It is possible every HIV-infected person might need his or her (9) ____ unique vaccine. American researcher Dr. Richard Kaslow warned “the challenge (10) ____ in vaccine design is formidable”. Another American, Dr. Bruce Walker, said: “It's very clear there’s a battle going (11) ____ between humans and this virus, and the virus is evolving to become unrecognized by the immune system." HIV has killed 25 million people worldwide. An estimated 33 million currently (12) ____ with the virus.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

discovering

(b)

discovery

(c)

discovers

(d)

discovered

2.

(a)

quickly

(b)

quicken

(c)

quicker

(d)

quick

3.

(a)

clarity

(b)

clear

(c)

clears

(d)

clearing

4.

(a)

this

(b)

these

(c)

the

(d)

that

5.

(a)

many

(b)

some

(c)

any

(d)

all

6.

(a)

from

(b)

of

(c)

for

(d)

at

7.

(a)

at

(b)

through

(c)

along

(d)

across

8.

(a)

to

(b)

for

(c)

by

(d)

at

9.

(a)

owner

(b)

own

(c)

owns

(d)

owning

10.

(a)

future

(b)

front

(c)

forward

(d)

ahead

11.

(a)

of

(b)

as

(c)

on

(d)

up

12.

(a)

live

(b)

alive

(c)

life

(d)

living

WRITING: 

Write about viruses for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about HIV and AIDS. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. VIRUSES: Make a poster about different viruses around the world. How do they affect people and societies? Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. HIV: Write a magazine article about a possible HIV vaccine. Include imaginary interviews with a doctor who believes more money is needed and a government leader who doesn’t want to give a lot of money.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to the researchers. Ask them three questions about HIV. Tell them three things the world needs to do to help them. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

F

c.

T

d.

F

e.

F

f.

T

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

discovered

a.

found

2

adapts

b.

changes

3.

huge

c.

enormous

4.

beat

d.

defeat

5.

evading

e.

steering clear of

6.

analyzed

f.

examined

7.

need

g.

require

8.

unique

h.

individual

9.

clear

i.

obvious

10.

currently

j.

presently

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

the HIV virus is cleverer

a.

than they thought

2

keep a step ahead of the body’s

b.

immune system

3.

finding a vaccine is a

c.

huge challenge

4.

the virus can adapt itself

d.

quickly and easily

5.

an effective job of evading

e.

our best efforts

6.

2,800 HIV-infected patients across

f.

five continents

7.

the challenge ahead in vaccine design

g.

is formidable

8.

there’s a battle

h.

going on

9.

the virus is evolving to become

i.

unrecognized

10.

33 million currently

j.

live with the virus

GAP FILL:

HIV virus a step ahead of body’s defences

A group of American and British scientists have discovered that the HIV virus is cleverer than they thought. Their research found the virus adapts very quickly to keep a step ahead of the body’s immune system. Their conclusions make it very clear that finding a vaccine is a huge challenge. One of the reasons for this is because the virus has many faces. The researchers believe the virus creates 14 different “escape routes” when it is attacked. This means the virus can adapt itself quickly and easily to beat any vaccine. Professor Philip Goulder of Oxford University calls this “high speed evolution”. He says: "Even in the short time that HIV has been in the human population, it is doing an effective job of evading our best efforts."

The research team analyzed data from more than 2,800 HIV-infected patients across five continents. They found the virus is adapting differently with different races. This makes the virus similar to separate armies, all adapting to their different environments. It is possible every HIV-infected person might need his or her own unique vaccine. American researcher Dr. Richard Kaslow warned “the challenge ahead in vaccine design is formidable”. Another American, Dr. Bruce Walker, said: “It's very clear there’s a battle going on between humans and this virus, and the virus is evolving to become unrecognized by the immune system." HIV has killed 25 million people worldwide. An estimated 33 million currently live with the virus.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - a

3 - b

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - d

8 - a

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

 

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