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The haemoglobinopathies have a celebrated role in the study of human genetics as the first examples of balanced polymorphisms described in human populations. Over the last 50 years, considerable evidence has been provided to show that these traits do confer protection from malaria. More recently, the underlying mechanisms of protection have been examined. This short review summarizes these studies and where possible shows how the putative mechanisms of protection may be linked to redox processes.

Original publication




Journal article


Redox Rep

Publication Date





304 - 310


Animals, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Hemoglobin, Sickle, Hemoglobinopathies, Humans, Immunity, Innate, Malaria, Plasmodium