The composition of the γ-chains has been examined in 21 fetuses and premature babies and in 18 full-term newborns. Gγ/Aγ ratio was slightly higher in fetuses (0.81 ± 0.04 expressed as glycine residue at position 136) than in full-term newborns (0.73 ± 0.06), while the incidence and the percentage ofTγ-chains were clearly higher in the first group and overlap the values found in the Hb F from β-thalassemia homozygotes. On the basis of these data the authors hypothesize thatTγ-chains may be codified by a gene more active during intrauterine life than at birth. Possibly, their synthesis may be reactivated when high levels of Hb F are present during adult life, as in β-thalassemia.
- γ-Chain composition
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