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Sickle Cell Trait - Research Paper Example

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Sickle Cell Trait Sickle cell trait (SCT) is not a disease in itself. It refers to a condition in which a person inherits one normal gene for hemoglobin (A) from one parent and one abnormal gene for hemoglobin (S) from the other parent resulting in the genetic type (AS)…
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Sickle Cell Trait

Download file to see previous pages... Normal red blood cells are smooth and round and therefore can easily move through blood vessels. Sickle cell trait (AS) differs from sickle cell disease (SS) in which two abnormal hemoglobin genes is present, one from each parent. Sickle cell disease is a genetic disorder that affects red blood cells, making them rigid, sticky and sickle shaped. Sickling causes plugging of blood vessels to occur which essentially hinders the transport of oxygen from lungs to various organs in the body. The objective of this paper is to highlight the various aspects of the sickle cell trait namely the historical evidences, mode of inheritance and its various complications. Historical evidences: The first case of death due to sickle cell trait was documented between March 1968 and February 1969 at Fort Bliss where four army recruits collapsed and died during basic training. Since 2000, nine college football players have died from sickle cell trait complications, by far the biggest non-traumatic killer in the sport. In March 2008, a jury finds the UCF Athletics Association negligent in the death of 19-year old Erech Plancher, who collapsed and died after offseason conditioning drills. ...
When both parents have the trait, their child will have a 50% chance of having the trait (hemoglobin AS), as well as a 25% chance of being normal (hemoglobin AA) and a 25% chance of having sickle cell disease (hemoglobin SS). These risks are associated with each pregnancy. Linus Pauling asserts "I have suggested that the time might come in the future when information about heterozygosity in such serious genes as the sickle cell anemia gene would be tattooed on the forehead of the carriers, so that young men and women would at once be warned not to fall in love with each other." Complications: Sickle cell trait is normally considered a harmless condition, but extreme physical activity can lead to complications that can be fatal. Complications from sickle cell trait are important because about three million people in the United States have this genotype, about 40 to 50 times the number with sickle cell disease. (Kark 2000). When the individual is at rest, their red blood cells are normal but rigorous exercise regimes induce sickling to occur and cause several problems. Such problems include increased urinary tract infection in women, gross hematuria, splenic infarction with altitude hypoxia or exercise, and life-threatening complications of exercise, exertional heat illness (exertional rhabdomyolysis, heat stroke, or renal failure) or idiopathic sudden death (Sears 1978; Serjeant 1992; Kark and Ward 1994 and Sears 1994). We will consider each of these problems in more detail. The frequency of urinary tract infection is higher in women with SCT than in racially matched controls, especially during pregnancy, when the frequency is about double (Pastore, Savitz and Thorp 1990). The presence of SCT in men was not associated with ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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