Applications of Flow Cytofluorometry to Red Blood Cell Immunology

Applications of Flow Cytofluorometry to Red Blood Cell Immunology

Applications of Flow Cytofluorometry to Red Blood Cell Immunology

Abstract

Agglutination and/or hemolysis of red blood cells (RBCs) by blood group antibodies have been used as indicators of antigen-antibody reactions by immunohematologists, since Landsteiner discovered the ABO blood groups in 1901.
Agglutination utilizing a secondary antibody (e.g., sensitization of RBCs with nonagglutinating primary blood group antibody, followed by agglutination by a secondary antibody, anti-human globulin (AHG)) has been used since the description of the antiglobulin test (AGT) in 1945. Agglutinating antibodies are usually IgM and are often ‘‘naturally occurring’’ (no known immunogen), (e.g., anti-A, -B, -M, -N, -P1, -Lea , -Leb ). Nonagglutinating antibodies are usually IgG (e.g., -Rh, -K, -Fya , -Jka ) and the result of a known immunogen (‘‘immune’’), usually associated with transfusion or pregnancy. Sometimes, naturally occurring agglutinating antibodies (e.g., anti-A, -B) have an IgG component, and less commonly IgM antibodies can be nonagglutinating antibodies.

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