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Am J Clin Pathol. 1997 Jan;107(1):88-91.

Hemoglobin A2 levels in healthy persons, sickle cell disease, sickle cell trait, and beta-thalassemia by capillary isoelectric focusing.

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Department of Pathology, Louisiana State University, New Orleans, USA.


Simultaneously measuring major and minor hemoglobin (Hb) variants by capillary isoelective focusing, we obtained HbA2 intervals in healthy volunteers (n = 412) (reference value) and patients with HbS or beta-thalassemia. We classified normal HbA2 reference intervals into three age groups: 5 months or younger (1.2% +/- 1.5%), 6 months to 1 year (2.2% +/- 0.9%), and 1 year or older (2.4% +/- 0.9%). These intervals were comparable to those used with other methods. Patients 1 year of age or older with HbS had significantly higher HbA2 levels (sickle cell trait, 2.9% +/- 0.9%; sickle cell anemia, 2.8% +/- 1.0%; P < .05). Although reference HbA2 intervals overlapped those in patients with HbS, no overlap in HbA2 levels was noted between these groups and patients with beta-thalassemia (observed range, 4.3% to 7.5%). The higher than normal HbA2 interval in patients with HbS must be considered before a diagnosis of sickle cell trait or sickle cell disease with beta-thalassemia is made.

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