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Adv Clin Chem. 2016;77:221-269. doi: 10.1016/bs.acc.2016.06.006. Epub 2016 Jul 25.

Advances in Blood Typing.

Author information

1
Section of Transfusion Medicine, Robert J. Tomsich Pathology & Laboratory Medicine Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH, United States.
2
Section of Transfusion Medicine, Robert J. Tomsich Pathology & Laboratory Medicine Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH, United States. Electronic address: sapatns@ccf.org.

Abstract

The clinical importance of blood group antigens relates to their ability to evoke immune antibodies that are capable of causing hemolysis. The most important antigens for safe transfusion are ABO and D (Rh), and typing for these antigens is routinely performed for patients awaiting transfusion, prenatal patients, and blood donors. Typing for other blood group antigens, typically of the Kell, Duffy, Kidd, and MNS blood groups, is sometimes necessary, for patients who have, or are likely to develop antibodies to these antigens. The most commonly used typing method is serological typing, based on hemagglutination reactions against specific antisera. This method is generally reliable and practical for routine use, but it has certain drawbacks. In recent years, molecular typing has emerged as an alternative or supplemental typing method. It is based on detecting the polymorphisms and mutations that control the expression of blood group antigens, and using this information to predict the probable antigen type. Molecular typing methods are useful when traditional serological typing methods cannot be used, as when a patient has been transfused and the sample is contaminated with red blood cells from the transfused blood component. Moreover, molecular typing methods can precisely identify clinically significant variant antigens that cannot be distinguished by serological typing; this capability has been exploited for the resolution of typing discrepancies and shows promise for the improved transfusion management of patients with sickle cell anemia. Despite its advantages, molecular typing has certain limitations, and it should be used in conjunction with serological methods.

KEYWORDS:

Blood group antigens; Molecular typing; Red cell alloimmunization; Red cell genotype; Red cell phenotype; Serological typing; Sickle cell anemia

PMID:
27717418
DOI:
10.1016/bs.acc.2016.06.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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