Science Rotavirus and Blood Type A

Published on April 16th, 2012 | by James Johnson


Blood Type A Could Mean Higher Chance Of Rotavirus Infection

Rotavirus and Blood Type A

A new research project has linked increased chances of developing a rotavirus infection to the blood type of patients. According to the study Type A blood cells are more easily recognizable to some strains of rotavirus which in turn allows the infection to find its way into the gastrointestinal tract.

The study was conducted by Baylor College of Medicine researchers in an online report in the journalĀ Nature.

The rotavirus is an intestinal pathogen that causes severe dehydration and diarrhea in infants around the world, claim the lives of 500,000 people annually.

According to new findings a key part of a strain of the virus known as P[14] is leading researchers towards a better understanding of the virus and how it infects type A blood carriers.

Science Daily lays out the studies researchers realized:

“In strains of rotavirus that infect animals, the top of a spike on the virus attaches to the cell via a glycan (one of many sugars linked together to form complex branched-chain structures) with a terminal molecule of sialic acid. The same did not appear to be true of virus strains that infect humans, and scientists believed the human rotavirus strains were bound to glycans with an internal sialic acid molecule, but they did not know how this occurs.”

Scientists were most surprised to learn that the rotavirus recognized a cellular glycan. According to researchers the only type of glycan that interacted with VP8* was type A histo-blood group antigen. Researchers believed it would interact only with glycan that contains sialic acide which histo-blood group antigen does not.

Researchers will now need to conduct more studies to determine why the rotavirus acts the way it does within human test subjects. For more information check out the journal Nature to read the studies full findings.




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About the Author

James is a new media professional with more than half a decade worth of experience in the online writing space. He currently serves as the Associate Editor of and the Editor-in-Chief of He also serves as a resident writer for Splash Press Media. In his spare time James consults businesses regarding SEO and Content Development.

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