Method identifies SNPs in genomic DNA offering new technique for fast blood group typing.
In a recent publication in The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics, a group of researchers present an automated assay for blood group typing. The method offers advantages over conventional hemagglutination techniques for large-scale automated screening of blood cells for red blood cell antigens.
The assay described by the team arises from an understanding of the molecular basis of blood antigens, which has allowed blood group typing by SNP analysis. The group tested their automated system, which uses 96-well DNA microarrays, by screening blood samples of known phenotype against 8 SNPs. This allowed identification of 16 alleles across 4 blood group systems. The method was tested in 960 blood samples and a high concordance rate of 99.92% was observed between predicted and known phenotypes.
The team conclude that their system holds promise in offering an accurate and low-cost blood typing method, which can allow more detailed analysis of blood samples than traditional hemagglutination techniques. This has implications both in identifying donors of rare blood type and in preventing alloimmunization from occurring following blood transfusion procedures.
Source: Paris S, Rigal D, Barlet V et al. Flexible Automated Platform for Blood Group Genotyping on DNA Microarrays. J. Mol. Diagn. DOI: 10.1016/j.jmoldx.2014.02.001 (2014) (Epub ahead of print).