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Adv Clin Chem. 2012;57:1-28.

Advances in hemoglobinopathy detection and identification.

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Division of Clinical Chemistry and Biochemistry, University Children's Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.


Hemoglobin disorders consist of two different groups, the structural hemoglobin variants and the thalassemias. The structural hemoglobin variants typically are based on the point mutations in the alpha- or beta-globin chain that results in a single-amino acid substitution in the corresponding globin chain, whereas thalassemias are caused by quantitative reduction in globin chain synthesis. Various techniques are applied for the laboratory investigation of these diseases, among them mass spectrometry (MS) for the detection and identification of structural hemoglobin variants and array techniques for the thalassemias. In this review, we present in the first part the most important mass spectrometric techniques applied in hemoglobin variant detection and identification and discuss several important aspects of this analysis technique in hematology. In the second part, the DNA analysis techniques used in hemoglobin analysis, such as reverse hybridization or microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) techniques, are briefly discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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