October/November #183 : Pesky Email Spam Offers Clues for Eradicating HIV - by Trenton Straube

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The Show Must Go On

A Capital Affair

From the Editor

Trench Warfare


Letters- October/November 2012


Full-Court Press

What You Need to Know

Jamar Rogers's Voice Will Go On

Olympic Winner Tells the World He's Positive

Pesky Email Spam Offers Clues for Eradicating HIV

Infant Circumcision Grows to Global Debate

Why Folks With HIV Can Be Excellent Transplant Recipients

We Hear You

Dr. No

POZ Survey Says

Taking Risks to Help Others

What Matters to You

Finding an HIV Vaccine

Treatment News

Detecting the Missing Link Between HIV and Brain Drain

Point of Reentry: Getting Prisoners HIV Care

New Booster in Town: Cobicistat

Bronx Cheer: An HIV Testing Program Shows Progress

The "War on Drugs" Spreads HIV

Comfort Zone

Dear Diary

POZ Heroes

Hip-Hop Soul

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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October / November 2012

Pesky Email Spam Offers Clues for Eradicating HIV

by Trenton Straube

David Heckerman, the guy who invented Microsoft’s email spam filter, is now fighting another type of invader: HIV. The two are similar in that they constantly mutate, explains Heckerman, a scientist with Microsoft Research who is collaborating with the Ragon Institute. To create strong spam filters, scientists must crunch enormous amounts of data about spam. Similarly, researchers are cataloguing huge databases of HIV, looking for fragments where the virus is vulnerable to attack. They’ve narrowed it down to about 20 areas, and that’s where scientists like Ragon’s Marcus Altfeld begin their work in the lab, hoping to one day delete HIV like so much annoying email.

Search: David Heckerman, spam filter, Microsoft, Ragon Institute

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