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By M.D. Fulton Roberts

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Extra resources for An Introduction to Human Blood Groups

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These steps provide against incompatible transfusion concerning anti-A, anti-B or other preformed antibodies in the patient, but they are not enough. I t is necessary to ensure t h a t the patient is not likely to become immunised by the proposed transfusion against blood-group antigens other t h a n A or B. Of these the only one t h a t is taken into account in routine transfusion is the R h antigen D which is the most powerful, and hence the most troublesome, of the other blood-group antigens.

It is far from convenient having the alleles of one locus labelled with two different capital letters (M and N) and those of the other locus distinguished by capital and small forms of the same letter (S and s), and the situation is worsened by the discovery of a third allele at this locus called SM, which indicates lack of S or s. , S 32 per cent, and s 89 per cent. The only one of these antigens that seems to be powerful enough to evoke antibody formation at all commonly is S. One may summarise the position by saying that there are two established loci in this system, the alleles of one of which being M, N and rarely Ma and of the other S, s and rarely SM.

I t may be t h a t the actual site of the gastric lesion (both with ulcération and cancer) is more particularly related to blood group influences and this, to be speculative again, may be concerned with the distribution of secretory activity in different parts of the stomach. I t has been suggested t h a t Group A predominates in both cancers and ulcers when the lesion is in the antrum and that Group 0 predominates when the lesion is in the body ; if this were so the association of cancer with Group A and ulcers with Group O may merely reflect the higher incidence of cancers in the antrum and ulcers in the body.

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