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Haemoglobin-E in the presence of oxidative substances from fava bean may be protective against Plasmodium falciparum malaria.
D Kitayaporn; K E Nelson; P Charoenlarp; T Pholpothi (Profiled Author: Kenrad Nelson)
Department of Tropical Medicine, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.
Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1992;86(3):240-4.
A case-control study was carried out at a community hospital in eastern Thailand in order to study the association between haemoglobin E and Plasmodium falciparum malaria; 271 P. falciparum cases and 271 controls were enrolled. After adjusting for age, sex, time since last malaria attack, history of mosquito net use, and history of fava bean consumption in the previous month, neither heterozygous nor homozygous haemoglobin E provided significant protection against P. falciparum infection, with odds ratios (OR) = 0.91 (95% confidence limits = 0.61, 1.36) and 0.78 (0.34, 1.82) respectively when compared to persons with haemoglobin A who were not consumers of fava beans. However, haemoglobin E carriers who ate fava beans were significantly protected against P. falciparum malaria with OR = 0.26 (0.09, 0.76) and OR = 0.001 (0.00, 1120.59) for subjects with heterozygous and homozygous haemoglobin E, respectively. The study suggests a possible synergistic protective effect of haemoglobin E on the risk of P. falciparum malaria in subjects who have consumed fava beans.
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