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People often ask questions about which genotype is the best or the strongest in respect to malaria proneness. There is no direct answer to that since the genotypes have their advantages and disadvantages, take your time to read them below and decide for yourself.
Advantages and Benefits of Genotype AA
From our previous article on the various types of Genotype and blood groups here. We can deduce that Genotype AA has the uttermost advantage when it comes to choosing a partner for copulation and reproduction( read on choosing a life partner here). People with genotype AA can reproduce with any other genotypes with having the fear of having offspring with sickle cell disease also known as genotype SS.
Disadvantages and Cons of Genotype AA
The teaching hospital at the University of Uyo carried out a research on this topic. The research reinstated that people with AA genotype are more prone and susceptible to Falciparum Malaria (malaria parasite ). They screened some children with Malaria parasites and found that 93.3% of them are AA genotype. About just 5% of the children screened were of genotype AS. They found facts during the screening of blood group, haemoglobin genotypes and malaria parasite or M.P (falciparum malaria). This indicates that people with genotype AA has high Malaria Proneness. (The parent determines the blood group of a child. Read about it here)
Why People With Genotype AA have High Malaria Proneness
Various research from various medical fields in the past has established the fact that malaria parasites (falciparum malaria) gotten by mosquito bites have a very high rate of oxygen use and consumption. The malaria parasite has also been known to also consume massive amounts of haemoglobin, for survival and during the peripheral blood period/stage of replication and duplication.
Since blood genotype AA red blood cells contain normal haemoglobin both in quantity and structure, thereby resulting in more oxygen-binding capacity and fueling of the malaria parasite duplication and replication process. This is the major reason why the malaria parasite (falciparum malaria) survives and thrives well in the AA genotype compared to other genotypes thereby Increasing the Malaria proneness of people with the AA genotype.
Advantage and Benefits of Genotype AS
It was also realized during the research that, being of blood genotype AS (sickle cell carrier) bestows and confers on you some form of protection from malaria parasite (falciparum malaria). This is because of the complex lifecycle of the parasite. When a person of AS genotype is infected with the parasite, the presence of the parasite causes the red blood with defective haemoglobin to rupture prematurely. This makes the Plasmodium parasite to be unable to reproduce or replicate since they need large amounts of haemoglobin and oxygen to do so. These happen during the blood peripheral blood stage of replication.
Also, the polymerization of haemoglobin hinders and affect the ability of the malaria parasite(M.P) to digest it, In areas or regions prone to Malaria parasite or mosquitoes (West Africa, East Africa, India, e.t.c), People of genotype AS( sickle cell carrier ) have higher chances of survival than people of genotype AA. Genotype AS ( defective haemoglobin) red blood cells conform and adhere to the parasitized red cells more easily than red blood cells of genotype AA ( normal haemoglobin). Haemoglobin Electrophoresis can detect abnormal haemoglobin forms. Haemoglobin Electrophoresis is a form of gel electrophoresis in which different types of haemoglobin moves at different and varying speeds. The most common forms identified from the process are people with Genotype AS( sickle cell haemoglobin HBS) and Genotype SS( Sickling HBSC).
All these indicate that the Malaria proneness of people with genotype AS is than that of people with genotype AA.
Disadvantages and Cons of Genotype AS
Also from the initial article on knowing your genotype and blood group here, we can deduce the fact that people with AS genotype are at a great disadvantage when they want to choose who to reproduce or copulate with. the reason why is because they are sickle cell carriers and can only copulate with Genotype AA alone, this is to avoid them having offspring who will carry the dreaded and disadvantaged sickle cell disease genotype SS.
Disadvantages and Cons of Genotype SS
Even though people with genotype SS( sickle cell disease) has the defective haemoglobin advantage, the protective effect on malaria enjoyed by the people with genotype AS does not apply to them. The reason is that malaria is the most common cause of health crisis for SS patients in regions where the parasite is available. Genotype SS patients should take anti-malaria chemoprophylaxis treatment throughout their lifetime.
Malaria Chemoprophylaxis is the preventive treatment of malaria for people with sickle cell disease(SS genotype). Also, people who don’t have immunity against malaria travelling to a region prone to malaria also take this treatment. You can also read about other ways to prevent malaria here. You can also read more about sickle cell disease and how to manage its crises here. Now you know the advantages and disadvantages of each genotype, you should be able to decide which one is the strongest or best genotype by yourself. If you enjoy this article please drop a comment
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