Latest Research News on blood disease : Jan 2022

Global burden of blood-pressure-related disease, 2001

Few studies have assessed the extent and distribution of the blood-pressure burden worldwide. The aim of this study was to quantify the global burden of disease related to high blood pressure.

Worldwide burden of disease attributable to high blood pressure (≥115 mm Hg systolic) was estimated for groups according to age (≥30 years), sex, and World Bank region in the year 2001. Population impact fractions were calculated with data for mean systolic blood pressure, burden of deaths and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), and relative risk corrected for regression dilution bias.

Worldwide, 7·6 million premature deaths (about 13·5% of the global total) and 92 million DALYs (6·0% of the global total) were attributed to high blood pressure. About 54% of stroke and 47% of ischaemic heart disease worldwide were attributable to high blood pressure. About half this burden was in people with hypertension; the remainder was in those with lesser degrees of high blood pressure. Overall, about 80% of the attributable burden occurred in low-income and middle-income economies, and over half occurred in people aged 45–69 years.

Most of the disease burden caused by high blood pressure is borne by low-income and middle-income countries, by people in middle age, and by people with prehypertension. Prevention and treatment strategies restricted to individuals with hypertension will miss much blood-pressure-related disease.[1]

The relationship between blood groups and disease

The relative contribution of founder effects and natural selection to the observed distribution of human blood groups has been debated since blood group frequencies were shown to differ between populations almost a century ago. Advances in our understanding of the migration patterns of early humans from Africa to populate the rest of the world obtained through the use of Y chromosome and mtDNA markers do much to inform this debate. There are clear examples of protection against infectious diseases from inheritance of polymorphisms in genes encoding and regulating the expression of ABH and Lewis antigens in bodily secretions particularly in respect of Helicobacter pylori, norovirus, and cholera infections. However, available evidence suggests surviving malaria is the most significant selective force affecting the expression of blood groups. Red cells lacking or having altered forms of blood group-active molecules are commonly found in regions of the world in which malaria is endemic, notably the Fy(a−b−) phenotype and the S-s− phenotype in Africa and the Ge− and SAO phenotypes in South East Asia. Founder effects provide a more convincing explanation for the distribution of the D− phenotype and the occurrence of hemolytic disease of the fetus and newborn in Europe and Central Asia.[2]

Coronavirus Disease 2019: Coronaviruses and Blood Safety

With the outbreak of unknown pneumonia in Wuhan, China, in December 2019, a new coronavirus, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), aroused the attention of the entire world. The current outbreak of infections with SARS-CoV-2 is termed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 in China as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. Two other coronavirus infections—SARS in 2002-2003 and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in 2012—both caused severe respiratory syndrome in humans. All 3 of these emerging infectious diseases leading to a global spread are caused by β-coronaviruses. Although coronaviruses usually infect the upper or lower respiratory tract, viral shedding in plasma or serum is common. Therefore, there is still a theoretical risk of transmission of coronaviruses through the transfusion of labile blood products. Because more and more asymptomatic infections are being found among COVID-19 cases, considerations of blood safety and coronaviruses have arisen especially in endemic areas. In this review, we detail current evidence and understanding of the transmission of SARS-CoV, MERS–CoV, and SARS-CoV-2 through blood products as of February 10, 2020, and also discuss pathogen inactivation methods on coronaviruses.[3]

ABO and Rh Blood Group System and Periodontal Disease – A Prevalence Study

Background: Varied literature is documented exploring the relationship between ABO blood group and prevalence of oral and dental diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate the correlation of periodontal disease with “ABO” blood groups and Rhesus factor.

Materials and Methods: A total of 684 systemically healthy subjects who were non smokers were selected by chance. Subjects with known blood group who had at least 20 teeth, were included in the study and the blood groups were confirmed from their medical records. Based on the periodontal parameters like clinical attachment loss (CAL) and bleeding on probing (BOP) the subjects were divided into three groups: healthy, gingivitis and periodontitis. The percentage distribution of ABO blood groups and Rhesus factor among the groups was tabulated.

Results: There was an increased prevalence of gingivitis in subjects with blood group ‘A’ and periodontitis in subjects with blood group ‘O’, while subjects with blood group ‘B’ had healthy periodontium. There was higher prevalence of gingivitis in Rh positive group.

Conclusion: A significant relationship between blood typing and periodontal disease was determined in this study. Further research into this is indicated.[4]

Hypertension in Children with Sickle Cell Disease: A Comparative Study from Port Harcourt, Nigeria

Background: Sickle cell anaemia is a chronic anaemia that is characterized by episodes of severe bone pain from blood vessels occlusion by sickled red blood cells when deoxygenated, and eventual end organ affectation and multi-organ failure. The aim of this study was to compare the arterial blood pressures of children with sickle cell anaemia in steady state with those of age- and sex-matched healthy controls and to identify those with hypertension.

Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted in the Outpatient Paediatric Haematology Clinic of University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital from January to March 2015. Blood pressure, weight and height were measured and a specific form was used to record data.

Results: There were a total of 50 children with sickle cell anaemia in stable state during the study period. Of these, 31 were male while 19 were females giving a Male: Female ratio of 1.6:1. All the patients had HbSS genotype. Most of them 22(44%) were between the ages of 5 and 10 years. The mean packed cell volume was 22.79±4.34. Majority of the patients had packed cell volume between 16 and 30. Most 41(82%) of them were underweight. The prevalence of hypertensive is 22%. Majority (82%) of them had low Body Mass Index. Conclusion: There is no significant difference in the systolic blood pressure of children with sickle cell anaemia compared to age and sex matched controls. Hypertension appears to be frequently undiagnosed by paediatric clinicians. Early, appropriate diagnosis is important so as to establish effective treatment for abnormal blood pressure.[5]


[1] Lawes, C.M., Vander Hoorn, S. and Rodgers, A., 2008. Global burden of blood-pressure-related disease, 2001. The Lancet, 371(9623), pp.1513-1518.

[2] Anstee, D.J., 2010. The relationship between blood groups and disease. Blood, The Journal of the American Society of Hematology, 115(23), pp.4635-4643.

[3] Chang, L., Yan, Y. and Wang, L., 2020. Coronavirus disease 2019: coronaviruses and blood safety. Transfusion medicine reviews, 34(2), pp.75-80.

[4] Anup, P., Siddhartha, V., Girish, S., Keshava, A., Sameer, Z. and Vishwajeet, K., 2016. ABO and Rh blood group system and periodontal disease-A Prevalence Study. Journal of Advances in Medicine and Medical Research, pp.1-6.

[5] George, I.O., Tabansi, P.N. and Onyearugha, C.N., 2015. Hypertension in Children with Sickle Cell Disease: A Comparative Study from Port Harcourt, Nigeria. International Blood Research & Reviews, pp.130-134.

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