The genetic defects known as thalassemias result from the partial or total absence of one or more a or P chains of hemoglobin. Over 750 different mutations have been identified, but only three are common. Either the a chain (alpha thalassemias) or P chain (beta thalassemias) can be affected. A superscript indicates whether a subunit is completely absent (a0 or P0) or whether its synthesis is reduced (a+ or P+). Apart from marrow transplantation, treatment is symptomatic.

Certain mutant hemoglobins are common in many populations, and a patient may inherit more than one type. Hemoglobin disorders thus present a complex pattern of clinical phenotypes. The use of DNA probes for their diagnosis is considered in Chapter 40.

Diabetes 2

Diabetes 2

Diabetes is a disease that affects the way your body uses food. Normally, your body converts sugars, starches and other foods into a form of sugar called glucose. Your body uses glucose for fuel. The cells receive the glucose through the bloodstream. They then use insulin a hormone made by the pancreas to absorb the glucose, convert it into energy, and either use it or store it for later use. Learn more...

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