Cases reported "alpha-Thalassemia"

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1/7. Hb Aghia Sophia [alpha62(E11)Val-->0 (alpha1)], an "in-frame" deletion causing alpha-thalassemia.

    In this report we describe a case of Hb H disease due to the interaction of the --(MED 1) deletion with a new alpha( )-thalassemia determinant. The molecular analysis of the proband's genomic dna was carried out by polymerase chain reaction amplification and sequencing of both alpha genes of the alpha( )-thalassemia chromosome and revealed a deletion of codon 62 of the alpha1 gene. This dna triplet codes for a valine residue at the E11 alpha helix, which is located in the interior of the heme pocket. Substitutions of valine E11 with other amino acid residues in the alpha as well as beta polypeptide chains lead, in the heterozygous carrier, either to Hb M disease or to congenital non-spherocytic hemolytic anemia. We assume that the deletion of valine at alpha62(E11) disrupts the conformation of the alpha chain to such an extent that the mutated subunit is rapidly removed by proteolysis. The final result is an alpha-thalassemia phenotype rather than an unstable hemoglobin syndrome. This conclusion is supported by the apparent absence of an abnormal alpha chain in the peripheral blood of the patient.
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2/7. Interaction of an alpha( )-thalassemia deletion with either a highly unstable alpha-globin variant (alpha2, codon 59, GGC-->GAC) or a nondeletional alpha-thalassemia mutation (AATAAA-->AATAAG): comparison of phenotypes illustrating "dominant" alpha-thalassemia.

    Thalassemia syndromes and unstable hemoglobins traditionally represent two phenotypically separate disorders of hemoglobin synthesis. Highly unstable hemoglobin variants, however, often have phenotypic characteristics associated with both ineffective erythropoiesis (thalassemias) and peripheral hemolysis (unstable hemoglobins). Many highly unstable beta chain variants cause a dominant thalassemia-like phenotype, in which simple heterozygotes for such mutations have a clinical expression similar to thalassemia intermedia. The phenotypic expression of highly unstable alpha-globin variants is usually less severe, due mainly to a gene dosage effect, and they are often only characterized on interaction with other alpha-thalassemia mutations, whence they are classified as nondeletional alpha-thalassemia determinants. This study reports the clinical and hematological findings in five cases with rare alpha-thalassemia genotypes: a single patient with the thalassemic alpha2-globin gene codon 59 Gly-->Asp hemoglobin variant in trans to an alpha( )-thalassemia deletion, and four compound heterozygotes for the nondeletional alpha-thalassemia polyadenylation mutation (alpha2 gene AATAAA-->AATAAG or alpha(T-Saudi)alpha/-alpha) and an alpha( )-thalassemia deletion. Evaluation of the clinical and hematological features in these two analogous genotypes clearly demonstrates the more severe clinical expression associated with the alpha-thalassemic unstable hemoglobin variant. In addition, the case in this study with the codon 59 alpha chain variant provides a further example illustrating the spectrum of phenotypes associated with the alpha-thalassemic hemoglobinopathies.
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3/7. Hb H hydrops fetalis syndrome associated with the interaction of two common determinants of alpha thalassaemia (--MED/(alpha)TSaudi(alpha)).

    To date, more than 35 single or oligonucleotide mutations of the alpha genes that cause alpha thalassaemia have been described. Their interactions give rise to widely variable clinical manifestations, from a mild hypochromic, microcytic anaemia to a lethal intrauterine anaemia associated with hydrops fetalis. Understanding the molecular genetics enables accurate genotyping, genetic counselling and prenatal testing for the most severe forms of alpha thalassaemia. Here we show for the first time that the interaction between two relatively common forms of alpha thalassaemia (--MED/(alpha)TSaudi(alpha)) may be associated with a clinically severe form of alpha thalassaemia, Hb H hydrops fetalis.
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4/7. Complex interaction of Hb Hekinan [alpha27(B8) Glu-Asp] and Hb E [beta26(B8) Glu-Lys] with a deletional alpha-thalassemia 1 in a Thai family.

    Hemoglobin (Hb) Hekinan (alpha27; Glu-Asp) is a rare alpha-chain variant found mainly in Japanese and Chinese whereas Hb E (beta26; Glu-Lys) is common among Southeast Asians. We report a hitherto undescribed condition in which these two variants co-segregate. The proband was a 25-yr-old Thai woman who was encountered with the presence of mild hypochromic microcytosis with Hb 8.2 g/dL, hematocrit (Hct) 26.0%, Mean Corpuscular Value (MCV) 68.6 fL, Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH) 21.6 pg and Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration (MCHC) 31.5 g/dL. Although Hb electrophoresis at alkaline pH did not show any abnormal band except Hb E in addition to Hb A, high performance liquid chromatography analysis revealed abnormal peaks at the Hb A and Hb E positions. dna analysis of the proband revealed a GAG-GAT mutation at codon 27 of the minor alpha1-globin gene for Hb Hekinan in trans to the South-east Asian (SEA) deletional alpha-thalassemia 1 determinant and a GAG-AAG mutation at codon 26 of the beta-globin gene for Hb E. She was therefore a triple heterozygote for these three anomalies. family study identified that her mother was a double heterozygote for Hb Hekinan and Hb E without alpha-thalassemia whereas her father was a classical Hb H disease patient. The genotype-phenotype relationship observed in this Thai family with complex hemoglobinopathies is presented and a simple dna assay based on the polymerase chain reaction methodology for rapid diagnosis of Hb Hekinan is described.
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5/7. Hb H disease caused by a homozygosity for the AATAAA-->AATAAG mutation in the polyadenylation site of the alpha 2-globin gene: hematological observations.

    We have identified 7 patients with Hb H disease as homozygotes for a mutation in the polyadenylation site (AATAAA-->AATAAG) and have compared their hematological data with those of Hb H patients having other types of alpha-thalassemia determinants. All 7 patients exhibited moderate anemia with microcytosis and hypochromia being similar to that observed in the other patients. Relatives with a heterozygosity for this mutation are borderline microcytic and hypochromic without a significant anemia but with a low in vitro alpha/beta chain synthesis ratio. Analyses of the hemoglobin components identified low levels of Hb A2 and Hb H that were comparable to those found in other patients with Hb H disease; the level of the zeta-chain was low (average 0.14%).
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6/7. Dinucleotide deletion in -alpha3.7 allele causes a severe form of alpha thalassaemia.

    We describe a family of Italian origin in which the father and his two children had hypochromia and microcytosis with normal iron status. All individuals underwent an uneventful clinical course and required no treatment. To investigate the molecular basis of this phenotype, which is a prerequisite for further genetic counselling, we revealed that all affected family members are carriers of a common form of alpha thalassaemia resulting from the deletion of 3.7 kb of the alpha-globin cluster (alphaalpha/-alpha3.7). However, this genotype alone could not account for the phenotype presenting in this family. Further characterization of the alpha-globin genes demonstrated an additional AC deletion in the vicinity of the initiation codon of the -alpha3.7 allele. This secondary mutation causes an additional impaired translation of the affected allele producing increased globin chain imbalance. This leads to a more severe phenotype, as heterozygotes for such mutation (alphaalpha/-alphaT) have hypochromic microcytosis and abnormal globin chain synthesis that mimic alpha0 thalassaemia trait (--/alphaalpha). Accurate genotyping of alpha globin determinant is absolutely required as there is a possibility that an interaction of this unusual double mutation with other common alpha0 thalassaemias (--/-alphaT) can give rise to a very severe, probably fatal, alpha thalassaemia.
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7/7. Human alpha2-globin nonsense-mediated mRNA decay induced by a novel alpha-thalassaemia frameshift mutation at codon 22.

    We describe a novel alpha-thalassaemia determinant in a 3-year-old girl presenting a mild microcytic and hypochromic anaemia, and normal haemoglobin A2 level. Molecular studies revealed heterozygosity for a novel microdeletion (-C) at codon 22 of the alpha2-globin gene. As the frameshift mutation generates a premature translation termination codon at position 48/49, we investigated the effect of the nonsense codon on the alpha2-globin gene expression. Although it does not affect rna splicing, the premature nonsense codon induces accelerated mRNA degradation. To our knowledge, this is the first time the nonsense-mediated mRNA decay has been reported to occur in human alpha-globin mRNA.
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