Background: Knowing the prevalence of blood group antigens in a given population is important to prevent hemolytic reactions. The Duffy blood group system (FY) has two main antigens, Fya and Fyb. Antibodies binding these antigens can cause immediate/delayed hemolytic transfusion reactions as well as hemolytic disease of the fetus and newborn. In this study, frequencies of Fya and Fyb antigen expression and FY phenotypes were determined in a cohort of Saudi blood donors.
Methods: For this study, 143 samples were collected from randomly selected volunteer Saudi blood donors living in Jazan Province. Serological analysis, using gel card technology, was performed to detect Fya and Fyb antigens among the samples.
Results: The frequencies of Fya and Fyb antigens were 12.58% and 11.18%, respectively. The numbers and frequencies of FY phenotypes were as follows: Fy(a+b−), 15 (10.48%); Fy(a−b+), 13 (9.10%); Fy(a+b+), 3 (2.10%), and Fy(a−b−), 112 (78.32%). The frequencies of the FY phenotypes were highly and significantly different in Jazan Saudis compared to other ethnicities (< 0.01).
Conclusions: This study reports the frequencies of the Fya and Fyb antigens and phenotypes of the FY blood group system in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Jazan Province. The null phenotype Fy(a−b−) was the most prevalent among this population. This study highlights the importance of investigating FY alleles in different provinces of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.