Moderate hemolytic disease of the newborn (HDN) due to anti-Rh17 produced by a black female with an e variant phenotype

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Abstract

The Rh blood group antigen e is of high incidence and has many epitopes. Partial expression may occur, more commonly in black persons. Individuals with e variant phenotypes can make antibodies to epitopes they lack. While some of these antibodies may be specific for an antigen, e.g., hrB, others, like anti-Rh17 (anti-Hro), show broader specificity, compatible only with D-- and Rhnull red blood cells (RBCs). Anti-Rh17 in persons of the D-- phenotype has been reported to cause mild to fatal HDN. We report an example of anti-Rh17 produced by a black female with an e variant RBC phenotype that caused moderate HDN. A panel of seven monoclonal anti-e demonstrated her RBCs carried a variant e antigen, and her genotype was RHD, RHce by PCR-RFLP analysis. Amniotic fluid with.OD450 values from 30 to 35 weeks' gestation predicted moderate HDN probability by the Liley method. At 38+ weeks, a viable 3165 g female infant was delivered. The infant's direct antiglobulin test was 2+ with anti-IgG. Total bilirubin rose to 14.2 mg/dL within 48 hours. Indirect bilirubin peaked at 14.7 mg/dL. The bilirubin responded to triple phototherapy. The infant was discharged on day 6. Potential for infant morbidity due to anti-Rh17- mediated HDN and the importance of specifying risks to women with this antibody if they contemplate pregnancy are discussed.

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  • Hematology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-42
JournalImmunohematology
Volume18
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes