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Int J Lab Hematol. 2010 Aug 1;32(4):373-80. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-553X.2009.01197.x. Epub 2009 Nov 16.

Application of an expanded multiplex genotyping assay for the simultaneous detection of Hemoglobin Constant Spring and common deletional alpha-thalassemia mutations.

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Hemoglobinopathy Reference Laboratory, Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland, 747 52nd Street, Oakland, CA 94609, USA.


Hemoglobin Constant Spring (HbCS) is the most common nondeletional alpha-thalassemia variant causing HbH disease, making its detection crucial in populations at risk. Universal newborn screening for HbH is carried out in California. Identification of alpha-thalassemia genotypes responsible for HbH and HbH-CS requires rapid, accurate and cost-effective genotyping methods suitable for population screening. We incorporated the HbCS mutation into our existing seven-plex genotyping assay for common alpha-thalassemia deletions. To assess the feasibility and diagnostic utility of this expanded multiplex gap-PCR assay, we determined genotypic frequencies of HbCS in samples referred for alpha-thalassemia testing between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2008. During the 3-year study period, 1436 samples were genotyped for alpha-thalassemia. HbH-CS accounted for 23 (13%) of the 176 cases of HbH disease identified. In a subset of 145 newborns referred by the California NBS program with an elevated Hb Bart's level at birth, HbH disease was confirmed in 134 (93%) and HbH-CS identified in 13 (10%) of these. This expanded genotyping assay has proven to be a rapid, reliable and clinically useful diagnostic tool for the detection of HbH-CS disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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