Compare Blood Types and the Basis for Abo and Rh Incompatibilities.

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Anatomy & Physiology II
Week II: Assignment II

Compare blood types and the basis for ABO and Rh incompatibilities. The ABO blood types are the most well known and medically important ones. The ABO blood type can be found in not just in humans, but other primates as well. The four principal types are; A, B, AB, O. An individual’s blood type is determined by a combination of two antibodies and two antigens; namely antigen A, antigen B, Anti A, and Anti B. The surface antigens A, B, and Rh are the most important. Blood type A has only antigen A, but cannot produce Anti-A antibodies because this will cause a self destruction of their blood. However, B type blood can be injected into their systems. Type B has antigen B, Type AB has both A & B antigens, but do not make ABO antibodies. Because their blood doesn’t discriminate against any other ABO blood types they are universal receivers for transfusions. Type O has neither antigen A or B. Only O type blood can be shared with any ABO blood type because O type blood does not produce surface antigens. However, person with O type blood can only be injected with O type blood. Blood can be Rh+ (positive) or Rh- (negative), and should not be mixed. An Rh incompatibility often occurs in pregnancies where the mother blood is Rh- and the fetus is Rh+. This causes destruction of red blood cells. An exposure of both bloods can also occur accidentally through transfusion.

Martini, F.H., and Nath, J.L. (2009). Fundamentals of Anatomy & Physiology. (8th Edition). San Francisco, California: Benjamin Cummings Publishing Company.

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