Ann Lab Med 2018; 38(6): 599-603
Frequency of Red Blood Cell Antigens According to Parent Ethnicity in Korea Using Molecular Typing
Kyung-Hwa Shin, M.D.1*, Hyun-Ji Lee, M.D.1*, Hyung-Hoi Kim, M.D.1,2, Yun Ji Hong, M.D.3, Kyoung Un Park, M.D.3, Min Ju Kim, M.S.4, Jeong-Ran Kwon, Ph.D.5, Young-Sil Choi, Ph.D.6, and Jun Nyun Kim, M.D.4
1Department of Laboratory Medicine, 2BioMedical Informatics Unit, Pusan National University School of Medicine, Busan, Korea; 3Department of Laboratory Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea; 4The Division of Human Blood Safety Surveillance, 5Division of Infectious Disease Surveillance, 6Division of Laboratory Diagnosis Management, Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Cheongju, Korea
Corresponding author: Hyung-Hoi Kim
Department of Laboratory Medicine and BioMedical Informatics Unit, Pusan National University School of Medicine, 179 Gudeok-ro, Seo-gu, Busan 49241, Korea
Tel: +82-51-240-7418
Fax: +82-51-240-7413
* These authors contributed equally to this work.
Received: November 13, 2017; Revised: February 11, 2018; Accepted: June 22, 2018; Published online: November 1, 2018.
© Korean Society for Laboratory Medicine. All rights reserved.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Frequencies of red blood cell (RBC) blood group antigens differ by ethnicity. Since the number of immigrants is increasing in Korea, RBC antigens should be assessed in children/youths with parents of different ethnicities to ensure safe transfusions. We investigated the frequency of RBC antigens, except for ABO and RhD, in 382 children and youths with parents having Korean and non-Korean ethnicities. Subjects were divided into those with ethnically Korean parents (Korean group; N=252) and those with at least one parent of non-Korean ethnicity (non-Korean group; N=130). The 37 RBC antigens were genotyped using the ID CORE XT system (Progenika Biopharma-Grifols, Bizkaia, Spain). The frequencies of the Rh (E, C, e, hrS, and hrB), Duffy (Fya), MNS (Mia), and Cartwright (Ytb) antigens differed significantly between the two groups. Eight and 11 subjects in the Korean and non-Korean groups, respectively, exhibited negative expression of high-frequency antigens, whereas 14 subjects in the non-Korean group showed positive expression of low-frequency antigens. The frequency of RBC antigens has altered alongside demographic changes in Korea and might lead to changes in distribution of RBC antibodies that cause acute or delayed hemolytic transfusion reaction.
Keywords: Antigen, Alloimmunization, Blood group system, RBCs, Frequency, Ethnicity, Korea

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