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# Environmental Science

## http://ptuas.loremate.com/evs/node/10 March 7, 2012

many developing countries. 2. Several viral and bacterial diseases which eliminated human lives in the past can now be cured by antibiotics.

Growth of human population through ages and shows the recent exponential growth. 3. Decline in death rate. 4. Increase in longevity. 5. Absence of any predator. In the civilized world, today, the only predator of man is man himself who destroys his own species through deprivation, exploitation, violence and war. Q. 6. What is annual average growth rate? Ans. Annual average growth rate. It is a measure of human population. It is calculated as follows Annual average growth rate in per cent =

where

P1 = Population size in previous census P2 = Population size in present census N = Number of years between two census.

Q. 7. How does total fertility rate influence population growth? Ans. Total fertility rate (TFR) is the average number of children that would be born to a woman during her life time assuming the age-specific birth rates at a given time. Total fertility rate is less in developed countries as compared to underdeveloped countries. It is controlled by economics and human aspirations. High TER increases the population growth while low TFR brings the population close to replacement level. Q. 8. Briefly explain crude birth rate and crude death rate. Ans. Crude birth and crude death rates are the number of live birth and deaths respectively per thousand person, on July 7 i.e middle of a year. Q. 9. What is demographic transition? Ans. Demographic transition. If birth and death rates are equal, it results into zero population growth rate, it is termed demographic transition. It may occur in all countries as they become developed but it may take many decades in underdeveloped countries. Q. 10. Distinguish between immigration and emigration.

Ans. Differences between immigration and emigration. Q. 11. How will you express dependency ratio? Ans.

Q. 12. How has human population increased to unmanageable proportion in recent times? Give any two reasons. Ans. (i) Enhanced longevity has contributed to population explosion. (ii) Advances is medicines and surgery have made it possible to save thousands of lives. Q. 13. What are the limiting factors which prevent the earth from supporting a human population of indefinite size? Ans. Following are the limiting factors which prevent the earth from supporting human population of limiting size: 1. Adequate food supply. 2. The habitable area on the land is limited. If man tries to create more habitable areas by cutting down trees in forests, it would lead to imbalances in the nature. 3. Limited natural resources. 4. Adaptability of an organism for growth to the conditions. 5. Famine, floods and epidemic diseases. Q. 14. Define: Age-ratio, Birth rate, Death rate. Ans. (a) Age-ratio. It is defined as expression of number of individuals belonging to different age groups in a given population. It is counted in three stages. (1) Pre-reproductive (ii) Reproductive (iii) Post-reproductive. Stability or instability, increase or decrease of a population are dependant upon its age ratio. (b) Sex-ratio. It is the ratio between male and female individuals in a given population. If the number of males is more, the population is said to be polyandrous, and if the number of females is more, it is called polygynous. Sex ratio can change with the age group of a population. (c) Birth rate. The number of individuals born per thousand of population. (d) Death rate. The number of individuals dying per thousand of population.

S-shaped growth curve of yeast cells. J-shaped growth curve of reindeers in predator free natural environment with maximum

food supply. S-Shaped growth curve. Under experimental conditions, yeast cells show a sigmoidal or S-Shaped growth curve. It has three phases 1. The early phase of little or no growth. 2. The middle phase of rapid growth. 3. The last phase. of zero growth or stationary phase. The growth of population depends upon the availability of space and food. It also depends upon adaptation of an organism to the growth conditions. J-shaped growth curve. J-shaped growth curve is obtained in case of small population of reindeer growing in a predator free natural environment having plentiful availability of food. In the beginning, there is almost slow growth and so soon as they adapt to new environment, they start multiplying rapidly and thus give 1-growth curve. But in a world with limited resources, environmental resistance does not allow population growth to soar towards infinity. Q. 3. State and explain Malthus theory of population. Ans. Thomas Robert Maithus, British Economist (1798). In his Essay on Population he stated that population grows geometrically n the absence of any check, whereas, the means of sustenance (food resources) grow only arithmetically. It would cause an imbalance between the growth of population and means of sustenance. There are certain positive checks such as shortage of food, epidemic diseases, natural calamities play a role in maintaining the level of population. Q. 4. What is maximum carrying capacity? Ans. Maximum carrying capacity. It is defined as Feeding capacity of an environment of an ecosystem for a population of a species under provided set of conditions. It is also defined as the Level beyond which no major increase can occur. This limit is a constant and represented by K. Maximum carrying capacity depends upon (i) productive system and (ii) protective system. Carrying capacity has increased due to use of advances in science and technology for the productive system of environment. Q. 5. (a) Differentiate S-shaped growth curve and J-shaped growth curve. (b) When do population growth curve assumes J shape and Sigmoid of 5 shape? Ans. (a) Differences between S-shaped growth curve and J-shaped growth curve. (b) When the food supply becomes insufficient in comparison with population,

mass starvation death is resulted. The graph of population growth will become J shaped. When there is no increase in population and environment can sustain a limited population, growth curve will become S shaped. Q. 6. How will depict the different stages of demographic transition with a simple sketch? Ans. Stages of demographic transition

Different stages of the demographic transition (1.) High birth rate but fluctuating death rate (2) Declining death rate and continuing high birth rate (3) Declining birth and death rate (4) Low death rate but fluctuating birth rate. Q. 7. What are drawbacks of a large family? Ans. (i) It is very difficult to afford even the basic requirements of a large family within limited income. (ii) The children often fall victim to malnutrition due to inadequate food. (iii) Repeated pregnancy spoils the health of the mother. (iv) Children born at later stage are physically weak and mentally retarded. Q. 8. List important attributes to reproductive health of a society. Ans. (1) Health and education of young people. (2) Marriage and child bearing during mature stages of life. Q. 9. Write short notes on (i) Human rights (ii) Value education Ans. (i) Human rights. Indian Constitution provides us right of judicial enforceability regarding civil, social, cultural, educational, political right. Even at the international level, the United Nations adopted the Declaration of Human Right, 1948 which has made efforts to promote and encourage respect for human rights and fundamental freedom irrespective of race, sex, language or religion. They have ranged from standard setting to monitoring from facilitating international dialogue and cooperation to provide technical assistance and from commissioning technical studies in deploying large scale peace keeping missions. In order to create awareness about the human rights, the people should be educated. The UN has

started efforts to promote human rights education with the main objective of teaching of common language of humanity to the people and make a universal culture of human rights. The promotion of human rights through education involves (i) Knowledge about ones rights. (ii) Values, beliefs and attitudes promoting an action. (iii) Elimination of prejudices. (iv) Developing a positive attitude towards establishing a peaceful and harmonious society. The human rights activists, womens wings and legal associations are actively promoting human rights education worldwide. In India, human rights education got importance will the highlighting of weaker sections, cases of custodial violence, child labour problems, atrocities against women, environmental degradation etc. which were brought to public notice through mass media, voluntary organizations and judicial activism. A National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has been constituted by the Central Government which has created confidence among Indian citizens. The functions of NHRC has been both investigative and permitive and it acts as a promoter of a culture of human rights in the country. NHRC promotes and cooperates with voluntary organisations active in the area of human rights. It also conducts carefully designed oriented training programmes for police, armed forces and paramilitary forces to apprise them of human rights. (ii) Value Education. The word value education refers to the means of developing the appropriate sensibilities, viz., moral, spiritual, cultural and the ability to make proper judgement and internalise them in ones life. It is an education for becoming a responsible citizen of the country. Value education gives informations to (i) live ones life in a decent way (ii) find happiness (iii) make others happy (iv) behave and communicate with other persons (v) grow and get success in life. Value education has different phases, i.e., value orientation, value awareness, value selection, value appraisal, value commitment and value action. The main objective of value education is to create and develop awareness about the values, their significance and role. The student should critically analyse the importance of value education because it gives him the idea to choose things which really appeal to him. Much has already been talked about environmental education. It can be made value based in incorporating following steps (i) Preparation of good text books which can inculcate in the minds of the readers the basic human value man in nature rather than nature for man. (ii) Social values like love, tolerance, justice and compassion should be the basic things during the teaching. (iii) Cultural and religious values should be critically studied and taught. (iv) Global values that human civilisation is a part of the planet should be mentioned.

Long Answer Type Questions Q. 1. How are concepts of biotic potential, environmental resistance and carrying capacity related to population growth? Discuss the assimilative and supportive capacity of natural environment. Consider carrying capacity as a planning tool. Ans. (a) Biotic potential. It is the potential rate of increase or it is the physiological capacity to produce offspring. The biotic potential of human species is estimated to be about 12 per female during the reproductive period of 16 to 44 years of age. The population increases when the number of births exceeds the number of deaths. (b) Environmental resistance. The factors such as shortage of food, disease, predation, environmental natural calamities which impose a check on population size constitute environmental resistance. In case the factors of environmental resistance cannot produce zero growth, the population shows rapid growth. The growth curve will take the shape of J. But in a world with limited resources, environmental resistance does not allow population growth to soar towards infinity. (c) Cairying capacity. It is measure of the feeding capacity of an environment or ecosystem for a population of a swcies under a given set of conditions. The population generally stabilizes aiound carrying capacity. All environments can sustain only a limited size of population. This limit of constant (K) is called carrying capacity. The carrying capacity of earth for human population is about 50 billions. This figure is likely to be reached in 2100 A.D. if the present rate of growth of population is allowed. 1. The concept of carrying capacity implies that the improvement of quality of life is possible only when the pattern and levels of production improves. 2. Consumption activities are compatible with the capacities of Natural Environment as well as solid preferences. 3. Supportive capacities. The estimation of supportive capacities involves: (a) Assessment of present for resources enhancement and management through technological, organization and managerial interventions. (b) Assimilative Capacity. It is the maximum pollution load that, can be discharged in the environment without affecting the designated use. Q. 2. How is population related to economic development of any country? Ans. Population and Economic Development. Rising population proves to be an hinderance to economic development of underdeveloped countries like India due to following reasons: 1. An increasing population necessitates ever increasing investments in order to increase per capita income of the people and the existing level of living standard of the rising population. 2. The countries like India having high birth rate and low average life expectancy having young population in which a large percentage of population is in 0-14 years age group which are economically unproductive or dependent on others (e.g. more than 42% of Indians belong to this age group). This age group reduces the rate of savings and capital formation. 3. Rapid growth of population decreases the per capita availability of capital which in turn

decreases their productivity and earning capacity. 4. Due to lack of capital resources in the under developed as well as countries, increase in population is not accompanied with increase in availability of gainful employment at the same rate. Owing to this, number of unemployed goes on mounting. 5. National income refers to the market value of the goods and services produced by an economy during the period of one year, while per capita income refers to income per individual of the population of that country. Population growth adversely affects the per capita income especially when the growth rate of population is more than the growth rate of national income. So check on population is the immediate solution to the problem of low per capita in the countries like India. 6. Rising population helps to perpetuate vicious cycle of poverty. Main reasons of this trend are : Decline in saving and rate of capital formation; failure of additional labour power in agriculture; static agricultural production; increased industrialization; etc. Q. 3. Discuss the factors controlling population density. Ans. Factors Controlling Population Density Three kinds of factors control population density of an area: 1. Geographic factors. These include: (a) Climate. Favourable climate increases population density of a geographical area because it favours increase in population growth e.g. arctic and antarctic regions are extremely cold and unfit for agriculture, so are totally uninhabited. Hot and dry climate of deserts are also not favourable for agriculture, so are less populated. Warm and moderate climate or tropical area is highly suitable for agriculture so it is densely populated. (b) Availability of natural resources like water, fuel and minerals also favour the settlement of human population. (i) Water. Water is essential for living organisms so human settlements are generally located near the water sources. Many cities are developed on the banks of rivers, lakes etc. Even our old civilizations flourished near water sources like Indus river, Nile river etc. (ii) Soil fertility. High soil fertility favours population density e.g., So remaining one third of land area supports about 90% of worlds population. Soils of Indo-Gangetic plains and the Indus valley are highly fertile and suitable for agriculture, so these areas have high population density. (iii) Fuels and minerals. The areas with rich deposits of fuel and minerals have high population density. (iv) Means of transport. These affect population density in two ways : allow redistribution of population and enable them to live in localities away from the sites of natural resources. 2. Socio-Economic factors (a) Urbanization. The trend of a large section of rural population to migrate to cities is called urbanization. Main reasons of urbanisation are:

(i) Better employment facilities, (ii) Better educational facilities, (iii) Better medical-aid facilities, (iv) Modernisation of agriculture etc. The urbanization causes (i) Redistribution of population. (ii) Transformation of a peasant society into a business community. (b) Ill effects of Urbanisation As urban areas produce little food, consume more natural resources and generate more wastes per capita than the rural areas, so urbanisation has a number of negative effects e.g. 1. Urban wastes are hazardous and contaminate the environment with less biodegradable compounds. 2. Puts pressure on agriculture to produce more food on less land. 3. Increased environmental pollution by intensive agricultural practices. Thus high urban population degrades the environment physically, chemically, biologically, etc. Other socio-economic factors are : industrialization, education, religious beliefs, marriage age, social status of women, nutritional status, health care, etc. 3. Demographic factors These include natality (birth) rate and mortality (death) rate. It has been described that it is decrease in death rate and not the increase in birth rate that has led to the population explosion. Q. 4. Discuss reproductive health of a society. Ans. Reproductive Health. In the human population, different individuals are at different stages of development of life viz., infants, children, juveniles, adolescent and ageing. Size, health and prosperity of human population are determined by the young people (i.e. between 10 to 24 years) of the population. It was estimated that at the end of 20th century, there were 1.7 billion young people, majority of which lived in the developing countries. Young people are again at different stages of development of life, viz, puberty, adolescent and early adulthood. Reproductive health of a society depends upon certain factors 1. Education of young people. It has been found that there is correlation between the state of education and birth rate. Indian states with low literacy rates (e.g. U.P., l3ihar, Rajasthan) have high population growth rate while Kerala has highest literacy rate but has lowest population growth rate. Women with more education tend to have fewer and healthier children, while less educated women tend to opt for, early marriage and child-bearing. 2. Health of young people. Young people have the highest infection of sexually- transmitted diseases (STDs), syphilis, gonorrhoea, AIDS, etc. It has been found that healthy women tend to have fewer and healthier children. Due to this reason, the focus of National Welfare Programme has

shifted from reduction infertility and growth rate to reproductive health care since April, 1996. 3. Early marriage and child-bearing. Studies have revealed that young women between 15 to 19 years face more complication of pregnancy, child birth and unsafe abortion which generally lead to their death. Even their children are premature, with low birth rate, weak and anaemic and face serious health risks. It is so because such women have not reached the proper pelvic size to accommodate the foetus and birth canal to provide a safe passage to the baby. So they are at a greater risk of obstructed labour due to blocked birth canal. This may cause permanent injury or death of mother and the infants. So following measures are suggested to improve the reproductive health of human population: 1. Greater enrolment of girls and their staying in the schools. 2. To avoid early marriage and child-bearing tendency. 3. Responsible sexual behaviour of the male partners towards their female counterparts. Boys should support their female partners in their reproductive health needs and decisions. Q. 5. Write a note on women and child welfare. Ans. Women and Child Welfare The woman has now become an important integral part of the modern society. The status of women has been enhanced in the present day world by the following strategies (i) Providing education (ii) Imparting vocational training (iii) Generating awareness (iv) Improving arid giving equal employment opportunities. A National Commission for Women (NCW) has been set up by the Central Government, whose main functions are (i) To examine constitutional and legal rights for women. (ii) To review and give suggestions regarding the improvement of existing legislations. (iii) To sensitise the enforcement and administrative machinery to womens causes. The gender inequalities are slowly being removed and this issue is attracting serious attention of the government and other voluntary organizations. The Indian constitution prohibits the child labour. Stringent laws have been framed but no follow up action is taken to curb the menace of child labour. The provision of the legislation is implemented more in letter than in spirit. Integrated child welfare schemes, like Indira Mahila Yojna, Adolescent Girls Scheme and National Nutrition Policy are some of the schemes to promote nutritional, health, literacy, education, recreational and skill development needs of women and children in the country. According to World Summit for Children (1990), a plan of action has to be devised and implemented by different countries of the globe to achieve the goals for development and protection of both women and child as far as their welfare is concerned. An awareness has arisen in the country to strive for women and child welfare. Q. 6. Give an account of methods to control population.

Ans. Methods to Control Overpopulation 1. Education. People, particularly those in reproductive age group, should be educated about the advantages of a small family and ill-effects of large families and overpopulation. In this, mass media like radio, television, newspapers, magazines, posters etc. and educational institutions can play important role. 2. Age of marriage should be raised. Demographers explain that postponement of female marriage age from 18 years to 20 or 22 years would bring down the birth rate by 20 to 30 per cent. Even a years postponement in each age group will decrease total fertility rate much less than the present 3.5 per cent for the country. 3. Family planning methods. India was the first country to adopt family planning (in 1951) as the government sponsored programme. But after the efforts of Indian government for about 50 years, birth rate in India has come down only slightly (only from 41.7 in 1951 to 28.3 in 1997 per 1,000 per year). This showed that voluntary family planning programme was not very successful. In 1976, Indian government thought of introducing a programme of compulsory sterilization which required one parent to undergo sterilization after a couple had produced two children. But due to public resistance, this programme was again changed to voluntary programme. Indias goal of two children per woman seems to be more difficult. Most of the countries stress for zero population growth by bringing down the population growth rate to replacement rate (average number of children per couple which will just replace the parents). Following Measures are Suggested: 1. Literacy rate should be increased. According to the 1991 census, 52.11 per cent of the Indian population was literate against 43.56 per cent in 1981. It is so because those Indian states with low literacy rates (e.g., Rajasthan, Bihar, U.P. and M.P.) have high population growth rates. Kerala has maximum literacy rate (90.59%) while Bihar has the lowest literacy rate (38.54%). Ernakulum district of Kerala is with 100% literacy. According to a recent UNICEF report, Bihar (second most populous state of India) has the second highest fertility rate of about 4.6% i.e., every couple produces more than four children. In Uttar Pradesh, the TFR is 4.8 (May, 2000). 2. Involving social organizations so as to make family welfare programme a peoples programme. The importance of this programme is evident from the fact that in the absence of the programme, the annual growth rate of Indias population could have been around 2.71 per cent instead of 2.1 per cent reported during 1981-91. 3. Providing more job facilities to women. 4. Proper implementation of community health programme 5. Incentives to the people for sterilization. 6. Providing facilities like contraceptives, IUD, birth control pills, sterilization etc. China has been more successful in reducing its population growth rate. China has low fertility rate of 2.2% and a high (75%) contraceptive usage compared to India (Fertility rate of 3.5% and contraceptive use in 43 per cent of couples). Q. 7. Explain various birth control methods. Ans. Birth Control Methods 1. Mechanical methods. These are of following types

(a) Condoms. These are rubber or plastic sheaths which are put on penis before starting coital activity (copulation). These check pregnancy by preventing deposition of sperms in the vagina. These are most widely used contraceptives in India because these are easily available, low cost, reliable, effective and with no side effects. These also prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) including AIDS, syphilis, etc. Female condoms. Hindustan Latex of India and Female Health Company of England have agreed to introduce female condoms in India. It is made of skin-friendly polyurethane which acts as a clip on the vagina wall blocking the passage to the womb. These were first maketed in Britain in early 90s and are being used in the USA, Brazil, South Africa, Zimbabwe, France, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Nepal. (b) Diaphragms and Cervical caps. These are fitted in vagina of female and check the entry of sperms in uterus. (c) Intrauterine Devices (IUD). These include Copper-T and loops which are fitted in the uterus and prevent the fertilization of the egg or implantation of the embryo. But these have certain drawbacks like occasional haemorrhage, chances of infection and spontaneous expulsion. 2. Chemical methods. These are of following types (a) Spermicidal tablets, jellies, paste and creams are introduced in the vagina before coital activity. These kill sperms. Common spermicidal chemicals used are lactic acid, citric acid, potassium permanganate, zinc sulphate etc. (b) Physiological (oral) devices. Birth control pills are taken through mouth. These contain a combination of synthetic progestins (acting like progesterone) and estrogens, so called combined pius. These pills inhibit secretion of hormones so these inhibit ovulation from the ovary. Commonly used hormonal pills in India are : Mala-D (daily) and Saheli (weekly). Drawbacks These birth control pills generally have side effects like nausea, breast- tenderness, weight gain and breakthrough bleeding (bleeding between menstrual periods) etc. 3. Surgical methods. These include following measures (a) Male Sterilization. It is a permanent method of birth control in which either testes are surgically removed, called castration, or cutting of the vas deferens called vasectomy. (b) Female sterilization. Methods of female sterilization include (i) Ovariectomy involves surgically removal of ovaries. (ii) Tubectomy involves cuffing of Fallopian tubes. (iii) Tubal ligation involves blocking of Fallopian tubes by an instrument called laparoscope.

Birth Control measures in female Birth Control measures in male (c) Abortion (Technically called MTP Medical Termination of Pregnancy). It is termination of

pregnancy before the foetus becomes viable. Certain pills are known to act as abortants which prevent implantation of blastocyst or even sLparate the implanted embryo. 4. Natural methods. These methods of birth control depend upon the natural rhythms of a woman: These include fol1owingmethods : (a) To abstain.. It involves refraining from coital activity. (b) Coitus interruptus. It involves withdrawing penis by male before ejaculation so that semen is not deposited in the vagina. It is oldest method of voluntary fertility control. This method has tertain limitations : Some sperms may be deposited in the vagina even before the sexual climax. --may develop psychological and physiological problems to both the partners. (c) Rhythm period. A week before and a week after the menstrual phase are supposed to be safe periods for sexual intercourse. It reduces the chances of pregnancy by about 80 per cent. It is so because : (i) Ovulation generally occurs on 15th day of the menstrual cycle (range is 13-16th day of the cycle). (ii) Viability period of ovum is of about two to three days. (iii) Viability period of sperm is of only one day. The period from 10th to 17th day (both days inclusive) of the menstrual cycle is called danger or risk period. However, rhythm period is not 100 per cent safe period. Effectiveness of rhythm period can be increased by basal body temperature or BBT technology. Q. 8. Write an essay on AIDS. Ans. (a) Acquired Immuno-Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) (i) Cause. AIDS is a severe viral disease which has been able to overcome all the defensive mechanisms of human body and generally leads to death. It is an acquired disease, so called Secondary immunodeficiency. It is caused by a retrovirus-H1V (Human Immuno-deficiency Virus), earlier called LAV (Lymphadenopathy Associated Virus) or HTLV (Human T-Lymphotrophic Virus). It was first reported in African green monkey but was first isolated in man by Montagnier et. al. (1983) and Gallo et. al. (1984). (ii) Historical background. It was first recognised in Hatai (U.S.A.) in 1981. In India, AIDS-virus was first reported in 1986 among ten prostitutes in Chennai. (iii) incidence of AIDS in world. According to WHO1990 report, there were about 8 million people infected with HIV, of which over one-third were women. By the end of 1995, the number of HIVpositive persons over worldwide was about 25 million adults and 1.5 million children. By July 2004, there were about 38 million people living with HIV/ AIDS and since 1980s, this pandemic disease has caused about 20 million deaths. UNAIDS1997 report stated that India has the largest number of HIV-infected people in the world. More than 8,500 children become infected with HIV every day i.e. six children every minute. More than 90% of them are born to an HIV-positive mother and acquire the virus before or during birth or through breast feeding. On an average, 16,000 people.

become inficted with HIV everyday - or 11 persons a minute, 90 percent of them being in the developing countries. (iv) Incidence of AIDS in India. In India, AIDS-virus was first reported in 1986 among prostitutes in Chennai. Upto 1992, about 104 full blown AIDS cases (Number of full blown cases of AIDS has increased to 5000 upto October 31, 1997) had been detected in India. WHO in association with NACO (National AIDS Control Organization) reported that at 1999 end,, there were about 3.5 million HIV-positive persons in India, 50% of which fall in the age group of 15-24 years of age. According to UN AIDS report (July 2000), HIV population in India was as high as 4.1 million (with second highest HIV population in the world after South Africa) In India, AIDS infection is rising at the rate of 10 per 1,000 persons (about 1%) At this rate, India would add over half a million people to the national total of HIV-positive people In Mumbai (capital of Maharashtra), 25% of pregnant women are reported to be HIV positive In sex-workers of Mumbai, HIV positivity has increased fTom 1 66 per cent in 1988 to 42 per, cent in 1992.

(v) Mechanism of action of HIV virus. When HIV attacks defence cells of body namely helper-T cell, then only genomic RNA and enzyme reverse transcriptase enter inside the host cell while protein coat remains outside. The viral RNA synthesizes DNA in the presence of enzyme reverse transcriptase and is called reverse transcription. The DNA copy of HIV is incorporated into hosts DNA to form a prophage and replicates along with hosts DNA. The viral genome transcribes large number of RNA particles, each of which gets surrounded by a proteinous capsid to complete viral particles. Finally the infected host cell is lysed and many HIV viruses are released which infect new Helper-T cells. (vi) Modes of transmission. AIDS is not a contagious disease. It does not spread through contact; caring of infected persons; sharing meals; mosquito-bite, light-kissing, handshake, blood-sucking insects, etc. Main sources of epidemiology of HIV are, sexual intercourse, use of contaminated hypodermic needles and syringes, blood transfusion, organ transplantation, artificial insemination from infected mother to baby during parturition (30%) and breast feeding. (vii) Diagnosis. AIDS can be diagnosed by Elisa test and Western Blot test. These tests give results only 2 to 24 weeks after the HIV-infection as no antibodies are formed during this window period. Clia diagnostic kits have been introduced to detect AIDS. Other tests for diagnosis of AIDS are Rapid tests like Dot Blot and Latex Agglutination Tests and simple tests like Particle Agglutination Tests. The ELISA test is based on antigen-antibody and enzyme-substrate reactions. (viii) Incubation period. It ranges between 15-57 months. Average incubation period is of 28 months.

(ix) Symptoms. HIV attacks Helper T-lymphocytes. The reduction in number of Helper T lymphocytes causes severe cellular immunodeficiency. Number of T-cells drops to even below 200 in comparison to 500-1500 in a normal person. So it is a disorder of cell-mediated immune system of the body. These clinically unhealthy persons are called opportunistics. AIDS is characterized by one of the following symptoms: These form 70% of AIDS cases. Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) - a lung disease. Idiopathic multiple a skin cancer (Kaposis sarcoma) Psychosis or chronic encephalitis severe brain damage. Thrombocytopenic purpureadecreased count of blood platelets causing haemorrhage. Lymphoma cancer of lymphatics. Lymphadenopathyswelling of lymph nodes. Another peculiar symptom of AIDS is severe Wasting syndrome (substantial weight loss and general decline in health). AIDS patients also become more susceptible to infections of any system of body. When brain is damaged, then it may cause loss of memory, ability to speak and even think. A full blown AIDS patient dies within three years and mortality is 100%. Most serious form of AIDS is AIDS-related complex (ARC) which is characterized by swollen lymph-nodes, fever, night sweats and loss of weight. (x) Risk groups. These include the homosexuals; university and college students; intravenous drug abusers; haemophillics; recipients of transfused blood and blood products; heterosexual sex partners; truck drivers; etc. (xi) Prophylaxis (Preventive measures) : No absolutely satisfactory vaccine is yet available against HIV infection of Indian types, so management of AIDS depends only on preventive measures like educating the people especially of high risk-groups; use of disposable needles and syringes; screening tests for donors of blood, organs, semen and growth hormones; having mutually faithful, monogamous relationship and avoiding prostitution, multipaither sex and homosexuality; using condoms. The life long monogamy and use of disposable syringe are best ways to prevent the spread of AIDS. India started a National AIDS Control Programme in 1987 which involved a three-way attack : surveillance, health and community education and promotion of safety of blood and blood products. Every year, December 1 is recalled as World AIDS Day. (xii) Therapy. Till today there is no specific therapy against HIV infection although Azidothymidine

(AZT) (but has side effects like anaemia) has been found to suppress AIDS virus and TIAS injection (prevents proliferation of AIDS virus). Efforts are on for a vaccine against the virus which is urgently needed to stem the tide of HIV. Though about 43 vaccines have been developed in USA and many are in various stages of testing but none has shown very much protection. However, these vaccines may not be appropriate for the Indian strains. So there is need of giving top priority to develop a vaccine for preventing HIV-infection. Two way strategy is suggested:

Antiviral Therapy (ART) against HIV, and Immunostimulative Therapy to increase the number of resistance providing cells. Q. 9. Discuss the role of information technology in environment and human health. Ans. Role of Information Technology in Environment and Human Health. The scientific society around the world is currently richer than before with data and knowledge concerning the global environment. However, the decision and policy makers as well as the general public, in particular in the developing world have little or no access to this information in an easily understandable way. Till today, the citizens including the politicians have not been able to feel any impact from the worldwide phenomenon of ozone layer depletion, greenhouse effect, climate change or loss of biodiversity. These are all emerging issues where scientists and environmentalists have strongly recommended prompt action than policy makers are able to implement. So, bridging the gap between the policy makers and scientists for the purpose of environmental policy making has become more important in todays perspective. Global Resource Information Database (GRID) was established in 1985 by UNEP for the purpose of bridging the gap and providing the global society with updated and reliable environment information. The strategic tools for achieving this goal were geographical information technology for the analysis and presentation of information and telecommunications for the dissemination and exchange of information. The need for GRID was mentioned in the report of World Commission for Environment and Development (1987). Today, the GRID network has grown into a global network of fourteen centres. The importance of information technology tools in environmental management in developing countries, has some inherent issues to be studied and solved. These are: (i) Bottleneck with respect to dat/information : Lack of access to existing data can be a problem This problem can be solved by information technology (ii) Institutional capacity : The receivers institutional capacity, organization, management and decision systems should be sufficiently well developed to use the IT tools efficiently. The information technology will be quite useless, if not properly used. (iii) Impact : Internet is the fastest growing medium in the developed world, available by satellites, cable net, telecom network etc. The open network will give us access to the global knowledge and information society. The internet will affect our societies through sharing of information, aquiring of knowledge and new opportunities for work and recreation. (iv) Infrastructure : Linking information spaces on the internet, opportunities exist to create local, regional and national informations. Linking together citizens, schools/colleges, libraries, newspapers and other information sources will create powerful infrastructures.