Publish Date: Aug. 12, 1985
Cover Story: AIDS: A Growing Threat
How TIME Covered the News: The disease was spreading, with no end in sight. In 1985, the AIDS crisis was proliferating among drug addicts and those in the gay community when actor Rock Hudson emerged as an unlikely, high-profile spokesperson. In announcing his ongoing battle with AIDS, Hudson drew new attention and publicity to the epidemic, eliciting a renewed call for a cure.
“It is the virtual certainty of death from AIDS, once the syndrome has fully developed, that makes the disease so frightening, along with the uncertainty of nearly everything else about it. Despite the progress in medical research so far, huge questions remain about its origin and fundamental nature. In trying to understand AIDS, says Dr. William Haseltine, a leading investigator at Harvard’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, “we have moved from being explorers in a canoe to explorers with a small sail on the vast sea of what we do not know.””