METHODS: The most used methods for the quantification of Hb A2 are based on automated high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) or capillary electrophoresis (CE). In particular Hb analyses were performed by HPLC on three dedicated devices. DNA analyses were performed according to local standard protocols.
RESULTS: Here, we described eight new δ-globin gene variants discovered and characterized in some laboratories in Northern Italy in recent years. These new variants were added to the many already known Hb A2 variants that were found with an estimated frequency of about 1-2% during the screening tests in our laboratories.
CONCLUSIONS: The knowledge recognition of the delta variant on Hb analysis and accurate molecular characterization is crucial to provide an accurate definitive thalassemia diagnosis, particularly in young subjects who would like to ask for a prenatal diagnosis or preimplantation genetic diagnosis.