Do "White" People Get Sickle Cell Anemia? Another Race Myth Solved!

Captain Foxhound BN0 2011/05/10 23:03:17

Yes, people who are "White" can carry sickle cell trait. Sickle cell diseases are actually a broad group of hemoglobinopathies
(genetic blood disorders) that affect over 250 million people around
the world, including people in Africa, North & South America, the
Mediterranean and Middle East, South Asia, and Europe.

Sickle cell trait is not a disease or illness - it is merely a
descriptive term that indicates a person has inherited on "normal"
hemoglobin gene (Hb A) and another "abnormal" hemoglobin gene (Hb S).
Some individuals with sickle cell trait are at increased risk for sudden
death if they are dehydrated or exposed to high altitudes, but this
occurs rarely.

If two individuals who have sickle cell trait (Hb AS) mate, then there is a 25% chance with each birth
that they will have a child with sickle cell anemia (Hb SS); a 25%
chance that they will have a child with normal hemoglobin (Hb AA); and a
50% chance that they will have a child with sickle cell trait.

Sickle cell trait occurs in approximately 1 in 12 African Americans; 1 in 1400 Hispanics, and nearly 1 in 100,000 Whites.

Read more: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Do_white_people_carry_sickle_cell_T...




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  • Disko Pickle 2011/05/11 05:18:06
    Disko Pickle
    People with sickle-cell anemia are immune to malaria, one of the most deadly diseases in the world. Having sickle-cell actually gives you an adaptive survival advantage over most of the rest of the world population.

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  • Melizmatic Disko P... 2011/05/11 05:41:23
  • Icedrag... Disko P... 2011/05/12 14:41:02
    Glad someone pointed that out. It's one of those quirks of biology where what seems to be a survival disadvantage is actually an advantage. Kudos.
  • boo Disko P... 2011/05/14 16:17:40
    That's kinda inaccurate sir. They're even more likely to die from a malaria attack because when the plasmodium from a mosquito infects a red blood cell, that cell dies faster than an uninfected red blood cell. Due to the sickle shape of the red blood cells of the "sickler's" as we termed them back home, under normal conditions their tissues and organs get much less oxygen compared to normal and sometimes their body can't keep up with replacing these cells which live for about 15 days. The people who have a much higher advantage are those with the sickle cell trait like me. We have normal red blood cells which only sickle under extreme conditions like malaria and in areas of very low oxygen. When the malaria plasmodium gets in our cells, they sickle(which to our body's immune system is a deformity) and they are marked and destroyed. Good thing is the red blood cells our body makes to replace those aren't sickled but normal red blood cells. I learned this in A&P last semester, did an honor's project on it and I have the sickle cell trait :-)
  • nabilah Disko P... 2014/01/16 12:04:36
    People with sickle cell anaemia aren't immune to malaria. However, people with the sickle cell trait have some protection against malaria being fatal to them.
  • Cimz 2011/05/11 05:07:33
    Not sure if they can....perhaps a rare case here and there?
  • Captain... Cimz 2011/05/11 05:11:27
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    nearly 1 in 100,000
  • Cimz Captain... 2011/05/11 05:16:46
    there we go! rare-ish case...lolz...okay I have two friends who have it (no they aren't white) It gets them pretty bad sometimes... :((
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾ 2011/05/11 04:46:33
    ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾
    I dont think they can but im no doctor maybe but most likely quite rare
    maybe found in the mixed Race of a child with a black parent and white parent are more likely to have it
  • nina.ho... ☥☽✪☾DAW... 2012/12/25 21:46:33
    wrong in order to have the disease both parents must have the gene and pass it on to the child. if only one parent has the gene and the other doesn't the child could possibly be a carrier but in order to have the disease and pass it on both parents must have the gene.
  • Steve 2011/05/11 04:22:07
    a relative of mine has it and she's white.
  • ««Gingey, the Master Debate... 2011/05/11 04:10:29
    ««Gingey, the Master Debater of Þ|-|Дэ†»»
    This is why I strongly encourage interracial marriages/relationships.
  • Artist~PWCM~ 2011/05/11 04:08:08
    In other words, pretty much no...
    Yeah it happens but you've got a better chance of getting polio.
  • Charu ∞ijm♥∞ 2011/05/11 03:41:28
    Charu ∞ijm♥∞
    Great post fox! Thanks for sharing this info. Blessings ~ Nana
  • Captain... Charu ∞... 2011/05/11 03:43:15
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    Thank you Nana!
  • Charu ∞... Captain... 2011/05/11 03:45:32
    Charu ∞ijm♥∞
    you're welcome foxhound! :D
  • PanDuh 2011/05/11 03:33:03
    Its not as common but yes, they do. A 4 year old I babysit a few years back had sickle cells. Everyone has a chance at getting some illness, disease, or mild mutation.
  • Cunningmungus 2011/05/11 03:27:33
    Can't somebody please jump on the obvious Obama Sickle reference here?? It's right in front of you!! jump obvious obama sickle reference communist sickle
  • Captain... Cunning... 2011/05/11 03:44:02
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    Oh lordy.
  • Melizmatic Cunning... 2011/05/11 05:12:47
    ::: laughs manically :::
  • Cunning... Melizmatic 2011/05/11 05:19:16
  • AndrewHull 2011/05/11 03:14:26
    Actually the are many Jews that carry the sickle cell trait.
    My son carries the trait also.
  • Nisa PinkySwear(*~*) 2011/05/11 03:01:02
    Nisa PinkySwear(*~*)
    Yea my mom has a trait...Thanks, I didnt know it was THAT common.
  • Charlied169 2011/05/11 02:56:43
    great information to know
  • Assassin~ Badass Buzz Guru 2011/05/11 02:27:04
    Assassin~ Badass Buzz Guru
    That is interesting. I honestly did not know that white people could get this. It is virtually unheard of. I see now. It is like Tay Sachs. Thank you. 1 in 100,000 is pretty remote.
  • Tau_Seti 2011/05/11 02:25:57
  • Captain... Tau_Seti 2011/05/11 03:12:37
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    So if one group left, say Africa, and went North and turned white through adaptation, then maybe the anemia came about after the split, but the text I read says some people with this trait had resistance to malaria, so that others died off, while this malaria resistant group lived on beyond child bearing age more often. It would have been an advantage to have the sickle cell trait, there, at that time. That makes sense if it is true. So if part of that group headed North and adapted with light skin, the sickle cell trait would have become disadvantageous. The northern people would no longer keep the sickle cell related adaptation.
  • AndrewHull Tau_Seti 2011/05/11 16:31:07
    Actually many jews carry the trait naturally. Do you think jews are white?
  • Tau_Seti AndrewHull 2011/05/11 16:33:03
  • Usti Waya BN-0 2011/05/11 02:23:31
    Usti Waya BN-0
    Very good article and extremely eyeopening. I really didn't know. Thank you, foxhound.
  • Captain... Usti Wa... 2011/05/11 03:17:15
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    You are welcome, FL. I didn't know either.
  • themadhare ~IJM 2011/05/11 00:33:58
    themadhare ~IJM
    the sickle cell trait mutated at least five times independently in five unrelated founders. each is expressed by different biochemical pathways.

  • Max7 2011/05/11 00:20:35
    Sickle Cell Anemia is predominately found in the Black race, and in people who are bi-racial. Usually sickle cell anemia skips a generation. None of my mothers children had sickle cell, but she had a brother who past at a very young age with sickle cell anemia, and she had a sister who passed away at the age of 35 from complications caused by sickle cell anemia. My mother's youngest sister, has a grand daughter who has sickle cell, she is in her early twenties. Now adays mixed marriages are more prevalent, opening the door for others to be born with this very painful illness.
  • abycinnamon BN-1 2011/05/11 00:10:46
    abycinnamon BN-1
    I would just like to add - Do white people get sickle cell anemia? Virtually no. Is it possible - sure but consider the odds. 1/100,000 x 1/100,000 (the odds of two white people with sickle trait breeding - and that doesn't even factor in that one is male and one is female which makes the odds slightly higher)= 1/10,000,000,000 (one in 10 billion), and then to have sickle disease would be (I think) 1 in 40 billion, sickle trait 1 in 20 billion.

    So really, do white people get sickle cell disease? From a practical standpoint?

  • Captain... abycinn... 2011/05/11 00:14:00 (edited)
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    The chart says 7 million light skinned have it. The quote says 1 in 100,000.
  • abycinn... Captain... 2011/05/11 00:20:12 (edited)
    abycinnamon BN-1
    Well, if that's correct, then that would mean that there are 7 x 10 6th x 10 5th caucasians, which would be 7 x 10 11th, which would be 700,000,000,000 caucasians - which is too many. So I don't know which of their numbers are wrong, or if both are wrong. but clearly something is wrong.

    I think the selection of population from which data were obtained should be scrutinized - this may be skewing the numbers oddly.
  • Captain... abycinn... 2011/05/11 00:35:14
  • abycinn... Captain... 2011/05/11 16:14:38
    abycinnamon BN-1
    yeah, me neither.
  • Max7 Captain... 2011/05/11 00:23:19
    Sickle cell has nothing to do with one's complexion, my aunt had a beautiful complexion but she was not light skinned, she was born with sickle cell and had a very rough childhood, but she was very strong willed and determined to get her education, she died at the age of 35.
  • Captain... Max7 2011/05/11 00:29:19
    Captain Foxhound BN0
    I'm talking about skin color related to sickle cell.

    1. The natural color, texture, and appearance of a person's skin, esp. of the face: "an attractive girl with a pale complexion".
  • Max7 Captain... 2011/05/11 01:54:51
    I'm not sure that I understand what you're saying. My aunt had sickle cell anemia and she was not a light complexed person. You've got me puzzled on this one, I also know others who had sickle cell and they were were brown skin.

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