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Nature. 1980 Feb 14;283(5748):637-42.

gamma-beta-Thalassaemia studies showing that deletion of the gamma- and delta-genes influences beta-globin gene expression in man.


In gamma-beta-thalassaemia, human gamma- and beta-globin gene expression is suppressed; this results in a severe anaemia in newborns which subsequently develops into a beta-thalassaemia syndrome in adult life. This hereditary disease is now shown to be the result of a deletion of at least 40,000 base pairs of the gammadeltabeta-globin gene locus. The gamma- and delta-globin genes are deleted in the affected chromosome but, surprisingly, the beta-globin gene is still present, together with a large segment of the DNA sequences flanking the gene on its 5'-side and the entire region on the 3'-side of the gene. Hence, a deletion of DNA far from the beta-globin gene results in the suppression of its activity.

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