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Am J Clin Pathol. 1977 Mar;67(3):219-26.

Hemoglobin A2 levels in health and various hematologic disorders.


Using a method involving elution of hemoglobin bands from cellulose acetate strips following electrophoresis of hemolysates, hemoglobin A2 (Ab A2) was quantitated in bloods from 300 healthy individuals and 904 patients. The percentage of Hb A2 was elevated in beta-thalassemia heterozygotes and some patients who had megaloblastic anemia. In the latter, the highest Hb A2 levels were observed in patients with the most severe anemia. Low Hb A2 percentages were found in iron-deficiency anemia, hereditary persistance of fetal hemoglobin, and Hb H disease. In iron-deficiency anemia, the lowest levels of Hb A2 were observed in association with the most severe anemia. Iron and folate deficiency each suppressed Hb A2 levels in beta-thalassemia heterozygotes; however, vitamin B12 deficiency did not alter the percentage of Hb A2 in thalassemia. Malignant tumors, renal and hepatic insufficiency, chronic infections and inflammation, hemolytic disease, lead poisoning, aplastic anemia, leukemia, myelofibrosis, and hypothyroidism did not change Hb A2 levels. The pathogenesis of altered Hb A2 levels and their clinical significance in various diseases are discussed.

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