Abstract

1. Paper electrophoresis of abnormal hemoglobins is a simple and convenient technic for the study of the hereditary hemoglobinopathies.

2. A semiquantitative paper electrophoretic technic is described, which allows rather accurate quantitation of the various hemoglobin components by inspection alone.

3. For exact results, the more elaborate technics of elution or photoelectric scanning may be employed. The accuracy of these quantitative technics is illustrated by artificial mixture experiments.

4. The clinical applications of the method in the study of sickle cell disease and hemoglobin C abnormalities are discussed. Apart from the more common hemoglobin abnormalities (such as sickle cell trait, sickle cell anemia, C trait, sickle cell-hemoglobin C disease), a patient with 100 per cent hemoglobin C (homozygous hemoglobin C disease) and a Negro patient with sickle cell-thalassemia disease were discovered. Normal adult hemoglobin (hemoglobin A) was found in all other hereditary and acquired anemias studied. Slightly increased amounts of fetal hemoglobin were detected in cases of hereditary nonspherocytic hemolytic disease and aregenerative anemia.

5. This technic may be used for red cell life span determinations by serially following the disappearance of a certain hemoglobin type transfused into a patient with a different hemoglobin variety. Further applications of the technic are suggested.

6. The combination of the technics of paper electrophoresis and alkali denaturation offer an adequate, simple, and practical tool for diagnosis and investigation of hereditary hemoglobinopathies.

7. Identical apparatus and buffer may be used for serum protein electrophoresis.

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