Most of us know about the A, B, O and AB blood type system, but what if there were others? Researchers have now discovered a new way to categorize these groups, which may have an impact on medical outcomes in the future.
There’s a few different systems we’re already familiar with, namely the ABO system and Rhesus system, which assigns a positive or negative to each blood type. These types need to be compatible in order to donate or receive blood. Antigens found in different blood types can be detected as foreign by the immune system, which can cause dangerous complications.
In 1982, evidence of a rare blood type came about when researchers found an odd antibody within a blood sample. While much wasn’t gleamed from that one sample, as the years went on, more and more people with these antibodies came up. However not enough specimens were available, as there were only 13 samples over a span of 40 years.
Researchers have now found that there are five Er antigens, and the results of their study will likely amount to a new blood group system later this year.