Notation for Serum-Protein Groups and the Genes controlling their Inheritance


SEVERAL workers1–3 have described the presence in serum of a protein with the striking characteristic of binding hæmoglobin. During electrophoresis on filter paper, this hæmoglobin-binding protein migrates in the α2-globulin position. It is the haptoglobin of Jayle et al. 1. The serum-protein groups described by Smithies4,5 are characterized by several proteins demonstrated by electrophoresis in starch gels which also have this property of binding hæmoglobin. They appear to be the only serum proteins with hæmoglobulin-binding powers. Furthermore, they also migrate in the α2-globulin position when the electrophoresis is carried out on filter paper5,6. Consequently, the identity of haptoglobin and the proteins characterizing the serum groups can be regarded as established, even though previous work had not shown the multiple nature of haptoglobin. The serum-protein groups are therefore basically determ ined by differences in the haptoglobins of different individuals.

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  1. 1

    Jayle, M. F., Boussier, G., and Badin, J., Bull. Soc. Chim. Biol., 34, 1063 (1952).

  2. 2

    Wieme, R. J., Experientia, 9, 380 (1953).

  3. 3

    Tuttle, A. H., Science, 121, 701 (1955).

  4. 4

    Smithies, O., Nature, 175, 307 (1955).

  5. 5

    Smithies, O., Biochem. J., 61, 629 (1955).

  6. 6

    Smithies, O., and Poulik, M. D., Nature, 177, 1033 (1956).

  7. 7

    Smithies, O., and Walker, N. F., Nature, 176, 1265 (1955).

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