The Initials Project: JR-CSF and JR-FL

29 October 2013 by Nathalia Holt, posted in The Initials Project

For two years I worked with a strain of HIV called JR-CSF. Although I was well versed in how the virus behaved in human cells grown in a flask, I had no idea where the strain came from or how it received its name. The initials project was inspired by the work of Rebecca Skloot and her investigation of Henrietta Lacks, known in the lab only as HeLa. In this series we’ll explore the people and science that made the cells, viruses and reagents behind the initials and acronyms used everyday in labs worldwide. First up is the story of J.R.

 

Yoshio Koyanagi wrote the initials on the side of the vial in tiny print: JR-CSF. It was the first year of his postdoctoral training and, in his own words; he “didn’t know the rules of nomenclature.” Instead he named the virus based on where it came from.  The name was simple and descriptive. He took the samples from a man whose initials were J.R. Then he added which part of the body they were isolated from. JR-CSF came from the filtered liquid of J.R.’s cerebrospinal fluid. JR-FL, on the other hand, was isolated from the frontal lobe of J.R.’s brain.

This was the first HIV positive patient Yoshio had ever isolated virus from. The year was 1986. On a warm evening in June, J.R. passed away. His disease was rapid. He had AIDS encephalopathy, a horrible disorder where the virus shuts down the brain. In his last days the virus left him with a crippling dementia. As if that wasn't enough, J.R. also suffered from a cancer commonly found in those with HIV called Kaposi’s sarcoma. It left red lesions across his body and made it difficult for him to breathe. He wasn’t alone in his illness. His partner had recently succumbed to the same unexplainably rapid AIDS disease.

 

It was the early days of the epidemic. Two years earlier, in 1984, HIV had been identified as the cause of AIDS. Despite this knowledge, there was no treatment available. Doctors could offer little but supportive care. In 1987 the FDA approved AZT, the first drug effective against HIV. It was a year too late for J.R.

 

Yoshio went to graduate school at Kyoto University in Japan before coming to Irvin Chen’s lab at UCLA for his postdoc. He entered the autopsy room on June 11, 1986. Yoshio was interested in HIV and the central nervous system. When he took the virus from J.R.’s brain and spinal fluid he couldn’t know that the samples he was extracting would become critically important to HIV research.

 

What makes J.R.’s samples so special is that even though they were both extracted from the central nervous system, one from the brain and one from the cerebrospinal fluid, they are genetically distinct. Although they came from the same person, they are two viruses. They even infect different cells. The virus originating from the brain can infect macrophages, an immune cell that protects us by eating up things like bacteria and dead cells. The description of J.R.’s viruses, published in 1987, was an early glimpse inside HIV’s diverse and pathogenic world. But the real gift J.R. gave us is the unique ability of his viruses to behave as aggressively in a lab dish as they once did in his body. The pathogenic nature of his viruses is partly determined by the HIV strain itself but also selected from the pressure a person’s immune system places on the virus. Make no mistake; J.R.’s viruses are valuable because he made them that way.

 

In the 25 years since J.R.’s viruses were isolated, they have been grown in hundreds of laboratories all over the world. The virus has become a respected lab-adapted strain that can be counted on to kill human cells and cell lines in culture, producing large quantities of itself in the process. The strain has been used in countless studies: from vaccine development to microbicides to eradication research. There’s hardly an area of HIV research that J.R. hasn’t had some role in.

 

Today thousands of HIV researchers around the world work with JR-CSF and JR-FL on a daily basis without any thought of the person behind the initials. HIV and J.R. are both literally and figuratively intertwined. Even after billions of rounds of replication, the genomes of JR-CSF and JR-FL hold the imprint of the person who carried them. Part of J.R. is forever wrapped up in the replicating virus. Similarly, the initials J.R. have become part of HIV’s identity, indistinguishable from the virus for those familiar with the samples. Every day students and postdocs thaw tiny vials with the labels JR-CSF and JR-FL neatly printed on opaque labels. They grow the virus in a warm incubator, writing J.R. on the side of flasks, tubes, plates. They print J.R. in their lab notebooks and then type his initials again in their research papers. His initials are spoken aloud in meetings, presentations, and the hushed tones that herald new data. He is everywhere and yet nowhere. Thank you J.R.

 

Interested in working with J.R.’s samples? You can order them from the NIH repository here

Yoshio Koyanagi, MD/PhD is a professor at Kyoto University and still works with JR-CSF and JR-FL you can find his lab here


10 Responses to “The Initials Project: JR-CSF and JR-FL”

  1. MADAM VICKY Reply | Permalink

    I have been suffering hardship from HIV/AIDS since 7yrs now, and i happen to have 2 kids for my husband, and now we cannot proceed to have another kids all because of my disease and now i have do all what a human like i and my husband can do just to get my disease healed, i have went to several places to seek for help not even one person could ever help, until i melt a comment on the daily news paper that was commented by Desmond about how this powerful traditional doctor help him get cured of the disease (HIV-AIDS) " my fellow beloved" i firstly taught having a help from a spiritual traditional healer was a wrong idea, but i think of these, will i continue to stress on these disease all day when i have someone to help me save my life?" so i gather all my faiths and put in all interest to contact him through his Email address at hivcurecenter@gmail.com , so after i have mailed him of helping get my disease cured, he respond to me fast as possible that i should not be afraid, that he is a truthful and powerful doctor which i firstly claimed him to be. So after all set has been done, he promise me that i will be healed but on a condition that i provide him some items and obeyed all his oracle said. I did all by accepting his oracles fact and only to see that after some weeks of taking his herbal medicine i notice some changes in my body system and i went for check up the day he ask me to go for check up to confirm if the sickness was still there,to my greatest surprise i could not find any sickness in my body i was first shocked and later arise to be the happiest woman on earth after i have concluded my final test on the hospital by my doctor that i am now HIV- Negative. My papers for check are with me and now i am happy and glad for his miraculous help and power.
    With these i must tell everyone who might seek for any help, either for HIV cure or much more to contact him now at these following email now,
    Email: hivcurecenter@gmail.com
    " sir thank you so much for your immediate cure of my disease, i must say a big thanks for curing my disease, i owe you in return. Thanks and be blessed sir.
    MADAM VICKY

    • shally mills Reply | Permalink

      Good day everyone,I AM FROM SOUTH AFRICA I have been suffering from HIV/Aids for over 4 years now, and suddenly, i have spent all my money all to make sure i get healthy all day, I came in contact with a traditional doctor also known as Dr.Trust on a newspaper. who has help much people to cure their HIV and AIDS disease, firstly i taught it was a joke until i contacted him.and he said that if i am ready for this work, i told him yes, and he collected my details and told me that the spell will only take two days.i was unhealthy ling surprise. And truly he called me to quickly go for a medical checkup, which I did, only to find out that I was not with any HIV disease anymore, my friends and families who left me before run back to me. I now found out that God in Heaven is using this man to bless and heal us all, he is a great and powerful man, again I say to you sir, that God Almighty will uplift you and your great work you did for I and other people. Please i will sincerely advice all HIV patient to contact this great powerful man called Dr Trust for your solutions. Ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or Ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com or call him +2348156885231 He is the best spell caster to work with,i promise you that you will get your problems solved. ...

  2. dr ekpen Reply | Permalink

    dr ekpen

    before people said there is no cure on HIV/AIDS but today many people have now believe that there is a cure. HIV/AIDS can be cured through Africans root and harms,and days our great doctors have finally found the cure of HIV/AIDS, many have get cured with the help of a great spell caster known as ekpen he is the one of the great spell doctor in Africa and he has the cure on this disease HIV/AIDS. last month he share is Haber medicine in some medical hospital and now he is well recognize as one of the best spell caster in Africa, you don’t have to be sad any more or share your tears any more on this disease when the cure have already be found. in 2013 the total number of people living with HIV/AIDS was 12.9 million but today the total number is 1.6 million if you want to get in touch with him in private contact him on this e-mail below: drekpenspelltemple@gmail.com good luck

  3. Morgan harriet Reply | Permalink

    My name is Morgan Harriet from uk my lover dumped me for another girl
    to meet her in usa, i was so confused until i came across a post about
    Dr emua, i never believe the post,but something in me told me to give it
    a try, so i contacted him and he told me the lady he is with now casted
    a spell on him, he said i should not worry, he said am going to receive
    a call from him in two days time, on that faithful day i waited for his
    call till 11;49pm, i did not see his call, as i was
    about to pick my phone to call Dr emua my phone rang, guess who called,
    it was the love of my life m organ Williams,he told me he did not know
    when or how he left me to usa, he said he was so sorry for every thing
    he had made me go through, he told me he was coming back to me the
    following day, that's how i got my man back, if you want to contact this
    great spell caster who helped me to bring back my love in just 2days,
    you should contact him with his email @ dremuahelphome@outlook.com or
    call him with this number +2349051177568, we are now happy as one big
    family contact him today and thank me later, here is my email address
    morganharret@gmail.com

    in-case there is anyone who has similar problem and still looking for a way out, and he those cast all kind of spell like
    Love Spells
    Luck, Money Spells
    Health, Well Being
    Protection, Healing
    Curses, Hex, Breakups
    NEW! Combo Spells
    High Priestess Spells
    Vampire Spells
    Authentic Voodoo Spells
    Custom, Other Spells
    Business spells
    Health/Healing spells
    Curse removal
    Job spells
    Healing from all kind of diseases
    Love binding
    Barrenness(need a child)
    Need love
    Lottery Spells
    Promotions
    Success
    Money rituals
    winning court case
    Divorce spells
    Low sperm count
    Infertility in women
    Breast enlargement/reduction
    Penis enlargement/reduction.
    i know this post will help someone that is really in need of urgent help,Dr emua you are just the best.

  4. Jessica Frank Reply | Permalink

    This is a testimony that i will tell to everyone to hear. I am Jessica Frank? have been married for three years and on the fifth years of my marriage, another woman had a spell to take my lover away from me and my husband left me and the kids and we have suffered for 2 years until i met Dr. Ekpiku of the Ekpikuspelltemple@live.com where so many people have been helped and i decided to give him a try to help me bring my lover back home and believe me i just send my picture to him and that of my husband and after 48 hours as he have told me, i saw a car drove into the house and behold it was my husband and he have come to me and the kids and that is why i am happy to make every one of you in similar to visit this man via Email and have your lover back to your self Dr. Ekpiku of Ekpikuspelltemple@live.com

  5. joelmercy Reply | Permalink

    Today has being the most happiest day of my life after 1 year of sadness and sorrow without being with the one i love, i tried all my possible best to make sure i make my lover happy but it never seems to work out well it was like am doing everything in vain but all thanks to Dr.uzoya for coming to change all my worries and sadness to Joy. i knew the great man when i read some wonderful reviews about Dr.uzoya how he has helped a lots of people on there relationship problem i was reading a magazine which then i saw great testimonies as well which then i decided not to waste time.he told me not to worry he assures me that within 48 hours everything would be sorted out i believed Dr.uzoya so much because i believe he can't fail me and i sent him all my details. Truly Dr.uzoya never failed me,my husband who left me for good a year come back to me. My husband and i have been living contentedly since this spell caster reunited us together with his love spells. Thank you so so so much Dr.uzoya for your powerful spells. expressions are not sufficient to say thank you. here is his email adddress is; driraborspellcaster@gmail.com OR his miobel phone +2348151098492

  6. shally mills Reply | Permalink

    Good day everyone,I AM FROM SOUTH AFRICA I have been suffering from HIV/Aids for over 4 years now, and suddenly, i have spent all my money all to make sure i get healthy all day, I came in contact with a traditional doctor also known as Dr.Trust on a newspaper. who has help much people to cure their HIV and AIDS disease, firstly i taught it was a joke until i contacted him.and he said that if i am ready for this work, i told him yes, and he collected my details and told me that the spell will only take two days.i was unhealthy ling surprise. And truly he called me to quickly go for a medical checkup, which I did, only to find out that I was not with any HIV disease anymore, my friends and families who left me before run back to me. I now found out that God in Heaven is using this man to bless and heal us all, he is a great and powerful man, again I say to you sir, that God Almighty will uplift you and your great work you did for I and other people. Please i will sincerely advice all HIV patient to contact this great powerful man called Dr Trust for your solutions. Ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or Ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com or call him +2348156885231 He is the best spell caster to work with,i promise you that you will get your problems solved.

  7. robin jane Reply | Permalink

    my name is Robin Jane. I am really pleased with this service. I am one of those people who said, “I’ll never call a psychic or a magician or whatever” to help me with my problems – least of all my love problems, but I reached the point where I knew I needed some guidance, and I’m so glad I found this man called dr. Trust. I never in a million years would have thought I’d be writing a letter like this, but when I nearly lost Andrew in one of our stupid,fights (he broke up with me), I thought I had lost everything.i cry all day and think that he will never come back to me again.i read a testimony by a man called Taylor Borg about him saying that how dr. Trust help him to get back is EX wife within 48n hours.I quickly email him.and also get back my husband with his love spell. And when I was at my most desperate,he didn’t take advantage of me. You performed a very good service for a person in true need. I don’t know how you did it, or how this magic works, but all I know is, IT WORKS!! Andrew my husband and I are happily back together, and I’ll always be grateful to dr. Trust email him for any kinds of help is very capable and reliable for help ultimatespellcast@yahoo.com or ultimatespellcast@gmail.com tel +2348156885231

  8. Emma Reply | Permalink

    I am here to give testimony of how i got back my husband, we got married for over 9 years and we had two kids. thing were going well with us and we where always happy. until one day my husband started to behave in a way i could not understand, i was very confused by the way he treated me and the kids. later that month he did not come back home again and he called me that he want a divorce, i asked him what have i done wrong to deserve this from him, all he was saying is that he want a divorce that he hate me and do not want to see me again in his life, i was mad and also frustrated do not know what to do,i was sick for more than 2 weeks because of the divorce. i love him so much he was everything to me without him my life is incomplete. i told my sister and she told me to contact a spell caster, i never believe in all this spell casting of a thing. i just want to try if something will come out of it. i contacted traditional spell hospital for the return of my husband to me, they told me that my husband have been taken by another woman, that she cast a spell on him that is why he hate me and also want us to divorce. then they told me that they have to cast a spell on him that will make him return to me and the kids, they casted the spell and after 1 week my husband called me and he told me that i should forgive him, he started to apologize on phone and said that he still live me that he did not know what happen to him that he left me. it was the spell that he casted on him that make him come back to me. my family and i are now happy again. Thank you Dr. Aluta for what you have done for me i would have been nothing today if not for your great spell. i want you my friends who are passing through all this kind of love problem of getting back their husband, wife , or ex boyfriend and girlfriend to contact traditionalspellhospital@gmail.com and you will see that your problem will be solved without any delay. He cast spells for different purposes like
    (1) If you want your ex back.
    (2) if you always have bad dreams.
    (3) You want to be promoted in your office.
    (4) You want women/men to run after you.
    (5) If you want a child.
    (6) You want to be rich.
    (7) You want to tie your husband/wife to be yours forever.
    (8) If you need financial assistance.
    (9) Herbal care
    (10) is the only answer to that your problem of winning the lottery
    Contact him today on: traditionalspellhospital@gmail.com

Leave a Reply


9 − eight =