Original Research

Molecular red cell genotyping of rare blood donors in South Africa to enhance rare donor-patient blood matching

Lavendri Govender, Rosaley D. Prakashchandra, Pavitra Pillay, Ute Jentsch
African Journal of Laboratory Medicine | Vol 10, No 1 | a1400 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajlm.v10i1.1400 | © 2021 Lavendri Govender, Rosaley D. Prakashchandra, Pavitra Pillay, Ute Jentsch | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 September 2020 | Published: 27 September 2021

About the author(s)

Lavendri Govender, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Technology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa; and, Molecular Research and Development Department, Specialised Laboratory Services, South African National Blood Service, Durban, South Africa
Rosaley D. Prakashchandra, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Technology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa
Pavitra Pillay, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Technology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa
Ute Jentsch, Medical Department, Specialised Laboratory Services, South African National Blood Service, Durban, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Molecular red cell genotyping is devoid of serology limitations such as the scarcity of rare antisera and the possibility of inconclusive results due to biological interferences. Blood incompatibility can result in immune transfusion reactions such as haemolytic transfusion reactions or haemolytic disease of the foetus and newborn.

Objective: The study aimed to use molecular red cell genotyping to identify rare blood group donors among South African blood donors.

Methods: Red cell genotyping data were extracted retrospectively from the BIDS XT genotyping software in the Immunohaematology Reference Laboratory from January 2015 to August 2016. The ID CORE XT genotyping assay was used to identify the single nucleotide polymorphisms of 10 blood groups system alleles in 150 donors. Associations between the resultant genotypes and predicted phenotypes, ABO group, RhD type, race group and gender were studied.

Results: Significant red cell genetic variability was noted among the numerous South African donor genotypes identified in this study. Genotyping further confirmed the presence of at least one of the 16 rare genotypes in 50 donors. Group O Black donors were associated with two rare blood types, while several other rare blood types were found only in White donors, supporting an association between ABO/Rh subtype, race group and rare blood types.

Conclusion: Targeted screening of donors for antigen-negative rare blood units for patients should be done to reduce the risk of haemolytic transfusion reactions and haemolytic disease of the foetus and newborn.


Keywords

red cell genotyping; genetic variations; rare blood types; donor-patient blood matching

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