A new strain of HIV has started in Singapore. This new strain evolved from 2 existing strains there. The new strain found in Singapore can be treated with existing HIV medication but doctors are concerned as the recombinant strain AE-B suggests high-risk behaviour among HIV patients.
Preliminary evidence shows that the new strain of HIV could be more aggressive and cause more serious complications and diseases.
The TTSH researchers have also developed a test – at half the cost of similar tests available in the market. These new developed tests are to monitor the treatment of HIV and determine if patients have developed resistance to their existing medications.
According to Dr Ng, (one of the researchers) such a test would be needed for about 20% of HIV patients as the virus in them gets stronger, or for any new patients who were infected by a carrier who had developed resistance to the drugs.
The rest of the world in medicine should pay close attention as this strain of HIV could begin to spread globally.