Genotype is the genetic makeup of an individual with reference to a trait or multiple traits. They are the collection of genes passed from parents to the children. You can visit for an explanation on genes)
Genotypes are divided into six- AA, AC, AS, CC, SC and SS. People commonly know about the 4 basic divisions, actually, there are 6 of them; though AC and CC are rare. SS and AC are the sickle cells.
It is important to know that for as many people that know their genotype, there are even yet many more that do not know theirs. Below are reasons why it is important to know your genotype.
- Marriage Purpose
- Health Purpose
The need for partners to be aware of their genotype before marriage is highly essential to avoid a deadly health implication in marriage. Intending couples should know both their own genotype and their partner’s at the early stage of their relationship before they are deeply rooted in love and emotions. Emotions and time spent in the relationship can affect people’s decision to break up if they are not medically compatible; giving birth to sickle cell children and putting themselves and their children through pain, torture and agony. Parents should check the genotype of their children during pregnancy or immediately after birth. This will help to know the health status of the child and what they have to do to sustain and maintain the child’s health.
“AA” genotype can marry anybody. It is safe for someone with AS to marry someone with AA genotype. The combinations of AS and AS, AS and AC should not be risked. There is probability of having a SS. Although. Two sickle cells should not even have a relationship or get married.
The outcomes of a genetic combination are-
SS & SS: SS, SS, SS, SS
AC & AC: AA, AC, AC, SS
AS & AC: AA, AC, AS, SS
AC &SS: AS, AS, SS, SS
AS & AS: AA, AS, AS, SS
AS & SS: AS, SS, SS, SS
AA & SS: AS, AS, AS, AS
AA & AC: AA, AA, AA, AC
AA & AS: AA, AS, AA, AS
AA &AA: AA, AA, AA, AA
History of Nigeria dates back to the era when the “abikus” were very prominent. Children who died prematurely or right after their births were called “Abikus” This was as a result of Ignorance and lack of proper knowledge on blood group or genotype. If these people were proper fully informed these may have never happened. Thankfully, the advent of modern medicine has provided basic explanation and education hence ignorance no longer is an excuse.
Genotype “AA” carriers are susceptible to malaria sickness in their early ages. Sickle cell “SS” arises when there is a faulty gene that affects how red blood cells develop. When the red blood cells do not have the required oxygen, there will be changes in its original disc shape to a “crescent-like” or”Sickle-like” shape resulting in the name “sickle cell”. Sickle cell patients experience severe pains in body organs that lack oxygen flow. Their bone marrow fails to produce red blood cells and this result to anaemia. Blood transfusion usually saves this anaemic crisis.
You should visit a certified hospital to get your genotype test done because the consequence of not knowing your genotype can be quite fatal and ignorance is not an excuse.