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Br J Haematol. 1987 Dec;67(4):459-66.

Red-cell GSH regeneration and glutathione reductase activity in G6PD variants in the Ferrara area.

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Divisione Pediatrica, Arcispedale S. Anna, USL31, Ferrara, Italy.


Red-cell studies were carried out on three groups of G6PD-deficient subjects with different G6PD variants from the Ferrara area of Northern Italy. Red-cell GSH and activities of G6PD, glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) were measured. A method was developed to measure red-cell GSH regeneration after oxidation of endogenous GSH in whole blood by diamide and only this clearly distinguished the variants from each other and from normal. Regeneration by 1 h was lowest in the Mediterranean variant, 0-10.2% in contrast to 93-98% in normal. A predisposition to a haemolytic crisis after ingestion of fava beans was not clearcut, but subjects appeared to be at risk if GSH regeneration at 1 h was less than 30% of the endogenous level, and red-cell FAD+ was very high indicated by high in vitro GR activity and inhibition by added FAD+. It is suggested that the most informative tests in G6PD deficiency are measurements of GSH regeneration in intact red cells plus GR activity and/or red-cell flavin compounds.

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