ENERCA presents collaboration with Cameroon to celebrate the International Sickle cell disease day

The prevalence of the HbS allele may be higher in Cameroon than in the rest of sub-Saharan countries

June 19th 2011

ENERCA collaboration with Cameroon

Today, June 19th, is the International Sickle cell disease day. It is a hereditary anaemia related to a structural malformation of Haemoglobin, called Haemoglobin S (HbS). The ENERCA project works to spread the latest scientific knowledge about this disease, and other rare anaemias, and supports initiatives to investigate basic and epidemiologic aspects of these pathologies. ENERCA presents a collaboration with the National Sickle Cell Diseases Association of Cameroon to celebrate this special day.

The high incidence of Sickle cell disease among black people is well known, but there is no systematic study to determine the percentage of population carrying the HbS mutated allele in Cameroon. It is estimated that over 4.000 kids are born there every year with Sickle cell disease. The ENERCA project is collaborating with Cameroon to quantify the disease impact in this African country. Bio-Rad has gently funded the material for the High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) analyses.

The study is a joint effort between the Erythropathology Unit at the Hospital Clínic of Barcelona (Spain), led by Dr. Joan Lluis Vives-Corrons and Dr. María del Mar Mañú Pereira, together with the Comprehensive Sickle Cell Unit at the Laquintinie Hospital of Douala (Cameroon), led by Dr. Erero F. Njiengwé and Dr. Odette Guifo. A better understanding of the burden of the HbS mutated allele will help to establish prevention and genetic counseling programs.

A total of 929 blood samples were taken from volunteers in Cameroon and analyzed in Spain. After HPLC analyses 245 Sickle cell disease cases were identified. The HbS allele was detected in the 32% of the population. Of those, a 26,4% were carriers of the allele and a 2,9% were suffering Sickle cell disease. In summary, the prevalence of the HbS allele may be higher in Cameroon than in the rest of sub-Saharan countries. It makes even more necessary to develop informative and preventive programs to minimize the spread of this disease in Cameroon.

More ENERCA information about Sickle cell anaemia:

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