Monday, 24 September 2012

Blood Groups and the risk of heart disease

Lorne Yellow Reagents
There is a link between your blood group and the risk of heart disease. So says a group of researchers from Harvard University. It seems that people like me – with type O blood – have some natural protection from certain types of heart disease. My colleague – who has the rarer type AB blood – is not quite so lucky. He is more vulnerable than most.
They don’t know precisely why this is the case. The study compared the incidence of blood groups and heart disease and found that there was a correlation. The mechanisms involved are not fully understood, though individuals with type O blood benefit from a substance that may assist blood flow and therefore reduce the risk of clotting.

It also seems that type A blood is associated with raised cholesterol levels and type AB is linked with inflammation – not great for the arteries! The good news for my colleague – and all other type ABs – is that such individuals are more likely to survive heart bypass surgery than any other blood type. So, as usual with a lot of these health news stories, it’s swings and roundabouts.

Still, as the researchers were keen to point out, relying on your blood group to dig you out of a hole is not such a great idea. Whilst it is always good to know your blood group, there are other things you can do to keep in good shape. Healthy eating, getting regular exercise and avoiding smoking are still the best ways to beat heart disease. And there’s nothing much you can do about your blood group anyway. You are pretty much stuck with it.

Anyway, cheer up! I have the conclusions to my own little bit of research. Lorne Anti-A, Lorne Anti-B and Lorne Anti-A,B are the reagents of choice to group an individual’s ABO blood group. Now, that’s what I call news!

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