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Thromb Haemost. 2007 Apr;97(4):534-41.

ABO blood group genotypes, plasma von Willebrand factor levels and loading of von Willebrand factor with A and B antigens.

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Hemostasis and Thrombosis Research Center, Dept of Hematology, Leiden University Medical Center, C2-R, Leiden, The Netherlands.


ABO blood group is a genetic determinant of von Willebrand factor (VWF) levels. We investigated the effect of ABO genotypes on VWF and factor VIII (FVIII) levels and on the degree to which VWF is loaded with A- and B-antigens, expressed as normalized ratios, nA-ratio and nB-ratio, respectively, in the Leiden Thrombophilia Study, a large case-control study on venous thrombosis. We found that the ABO locus had an allele-specific, dosage dependent effect on VWF and FVIII levels and on the loading of VWF with A-antigen and B-antigen. The highest mean nA- and nB-ratios were found in A(1)A(1) and BB genotypes, respectively. Four A(1)O carriers had four 43-bp repeats in the minisatellite region of the ABO gene in stead of the expected one repeat. All had a reduced nA-ratio compared to A(1)O carriers with one repeat in their A(1) allele. The amount of A- and B-antigens expressed onVWF (nA-ratio and nB-ratio) explained about 18% (R(2)) of the variation in VWF levels.

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