Homozygous β-thalassemia without anemia

S. Safaya, R. F. Rieder, C. E. Dowling, H. H. Kazazian, J. G. Adams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A 37-year-old man of Guyanese origin was found to have homozygous β-thalassemia without anemia. There were no physical stigmata of thalassemia. The hematocrit value was 41 to 45.8, the mean corpuscular volume was 61 fL, and the mean corpuscular hemoglobin was 18.9 pg. The HbF was 45% with a (G)γ:(A)γ ratio of 3:1. An acid elution preparation of the peripheral blood showed heterogeneous distribution of HbF, but all erythrocytes stained for fetal hemoglobin. The β/α synthesis ratio in the peripheral blood was 0.25; the (β + γ)/α ratio was 0.55. Haplotype analysis revealed homozygosity for the -+-++++ pattern (Senegal, type IX) at seven polymorphic restriction sites within the β-like gene complex. Digestion of DNA with XmnI indicated that the -158 C-to-T transition was present in both β-globin gene clusters. Oligomer hybridization analysis demonstrated homozygosity for the -29 A-to-G mutation in the β-globin promoter region. Although this form of thalassemia can cause transfusion-requiring anemia, the high-HbF, high-(G)γ phenotype associated with the linked +-++ subhaplotype and -158 C-to-T substitution appears to have ameliorated the disease in this subject.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)324-328
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology

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