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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A molecular study of a family with Greek hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin and beta-thalassemia.

A family was studied in which two inherited defects of the non-alpha-globin cluster segregate: Greek hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin (HPFH) and beta-thalassemia. Fragments of the non-alpha-globin cluster from two patients were cloned in cosmid and phage lambda vectors, and assigned to either the HPFH or beta-thalassemic chromosome on the basis of the demonstration of a polymorphic BglII site in the HPFH gamma-globin cluster. The thalassemic beta-globin gene carries a mutation at nucleotide 1 of the intervening sequence I, known to cause beta zero-thalassemia; the beta-globin gene from the HPFH chromosome is entirely normal, both in the intron-exon sequence and in 5' flanking regions required for transcription. As the compound HPFH/beta-thalassemia heterozygote synthesizes HbA, these data prove that the HPFH beta-globin gene is functional, although at a decreased rate; its lower activity is likely to be due to a distant mutation. The HPFH A gamma-globin gene shows only two mutations: a T----C substitution in the large intervening sequence (responsible for the BglII polymorphic site) and a C----T substitution 196 nucleotides 5' to the cap site; the 5' flanking sequence is normal up to -1350 nucleotides upstream from the gene. Circumstantial evidence suggests that the mutation at -196 may be responsible for the abnormally high expression of the A gamma-globin gene.[1]


  1. A molecular study of a family with Greek hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin and beta-thalassemia. Giglioni, B., Casini, C., Mantovani, R., Merli, S., Comi, P., Ottolenghi, S., Saglio, G., Camaschella, C., Mazza, U. EMBO J. (1984) [Pubmed]
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