Hereditary anaemias and iron deficiency in a tribal population (the Baiga) of central India

P. H. Reddy, M. Petrou, P. A. Reddy, R. S. Tiwary, B. Modell

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    17 Scopus citations


    Abstract: We have studied the prevalence and molecular nature of hereditary anaemias (abnormal haemoglobins, β‐thalassaemia, α‐thalassaemia, and Glucose 6 phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency) in a primitive central Indian tribe, the Baiga. 43% of the population appear to be iron‐deficient. Hereditary anaemia gene frequencies are, sickle cell 0.0824, G6PD deficiency (in males) 0.0457, β‐thalassaemia 0.0057, and deletional α‐plus thalassaemia 0.65. Both – α3.7 and –α4.2 deletions were observed and non‐deletional α‐thalassaemia was suspected. The overall gene frequency of Xmn I + polymorphism (C→T – 158 cap site; upstream of G gamma region) is 0.35. This polymorphism is preferentially linked to βS genes. It appears that sickle cell disease covers a wide range of severity in the Baiga tribe based on higher mortality in the offspring of AS × AS parents (2.5/couple) compared to AA × AS (0.75/couple) and AA × AA (0.76/couple) parents. This is compatible with the high frequency of genetic modifying factors, i.e., the Xmn I polymorphism and α‐thalassaemia. The results also indicate that “normal” red cell values must be defined for each population where thalassaemias, G6PD deficiency and iron deficiency are common.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)103-109
    Number of pages7
    JournalEuropean Journal of Haematology
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - Aug 1995


    • Indian tribal peoples
    • Xmn I polymorphism
    • alpha thalassaemia
    • sickle cell

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Hematology


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