Journal Article
Observational Study
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Association of ABO, Rh-D and Kell blood groups with transfusion transmitted infections among blood donors from the Asir Region, Saudi Arabia: A retrospective observational study.

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the association between transfusion-transmitted infections (TTIs) and ABO, Rh-D, and Kell blood systems among blood donors.

METHODS: This was a retrospective study of 10,095 donors who visited the Blood Bank at Asir Hospital, Abha, Saudi Arabia. Data including demographic information, ABO, Rh-D, and Kell blood groups, and serological and molecular test results of TTIs (the TTIs were obtained from each donor's records). Chi-squared and Fisher's exact tests were employed to establish possible associations between blood groups and TTIs.

RESULTS: The prevalence rate of TTIs among donors was 6.3%, with HBcAb (70%) being the most prevalent biomarker among positive donors. Donors with the O blood group were at a higher risk of contracting TTIs. Significant associations were observed between HIV and blood group A (χ2 =6.30, p =0.01), HBsAg and group AB (χ2 =17.3193, p =0.00003), malaria and group A (χ2 =5.0567, p =0.02), and HBV-DNA and group AB (χ2 =12.3163, p =0.0004). Also, Kell blood group was significantly associated with HIV (χ2 =14.5, p =0.0001), HBcAb (χ2 =78.51, p <0.0001), and syphilis (χ2 =25.225, p <0.00001).

CONCLUSION: ABO and Kell blood groups are associated with TTI markers. These findings highlight the need for improved strategies and approaches in screening and managing blood donations to minimize the risk of TTIs.

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