The Influence of ABO Phenotypes on Malaria infections in cord blood (placenta) and Pregnant women in General Hospital, Calabar, Nigeria M. E Kooffreh and B.A Nwaeze
This study was carried out to determine the influence of ABO blood group phenotypes on Plasmodium falciparum malaria in pregnant mothers and the placenta of their neonates in General Hospital, Calabar. Cross Rivers State. Thirty women and 30 neonates were sampled randomly using blood and cord blood respectively. Blood was screened for ABO blood group antigens and malaria parasite infections. The antigen of the blood groups were determined by phenotyping using the commercial anti sera, while malaria screening was carried through the conventional method using field stains A and B. Eight (26.7%) women had blood group A and 7 were positive for malaria parasites, 7 (23.3%) had blood group B and 6 were positive for malaria parasites, all 4 (13.3%) women with blood group AB were positive for malaria parasites. The remaining 11 mothers (36.7%) had blood group O and 6 had malaria. Seventeen (56.7%) of the examined women were primiparae and 13 (43.3%) were multiparae. In total, 23 (76.7%) had malaria, while 7 (23.3%) were negative. Blood group O was significantly associated with increased placental malaria infection in primiparae and reduced risk infection in multiparae in women in General Hospital, Calabar. Mother to child transmission was low as 6 of the women with malaria transmitted the infection to their neonates while 17 of them gave birth to neonates who did not have malaria parasites in the placenta. This results add to existing data on the influence of ABO blood groups on malaria parasite infection in pregnant mothers and neonates. Further investigations need to be carried out in larger populations.