Aims: To examine a disputed association between the Lewis(a-b-) phenotype and Type 1 diabetes (T1D). Methods: Lewis red blood cell phenotyping was performed for 97 T1D White patients and 100 control subjects using monoclonal antibodies. Two historical cohorts were also included as a control population. Results: T1D patients had a lower frequency (4.1%) of Lewis(a-b-) blood group compared with simultaneously tested healthy control subjects (10.0%) and the historical control group (11.1%, P = 0.02). Male T1D patients showed a Lewis(a-b-) frequency of 8.0%, which was similar to both matched healthy male donors (9.8%) and historical (9.5%) male control subjects. Unexpectedly, none of the female T1D patients displayed Lewis(a-b-) phenotype, vs. 10.3% and 10.8% of female control subjects (P = 0.039 and 0.017). Conclusions: The Lewis(a-b-) phenotype occurs less frequently in T1D compared with healthy control subjects with a strong female gender bias.

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Diabetic Medicine: journal of diabetes UK
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Kharagjitsingh, A. V., Prinsen, K., Lemkes, H. H. P. J., de Vries, R., Roep, B., & Buschard, K. (2008). Reduced frequency of blood group Lewis a-b- in female Type 1 diabetes patients. Diabetic Medicine: journal of diabetes UK, 25(2), 236–238. doi:10.1111/j.1464-5491.2007.02340.x