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What is a blood type? 

 

 

When referring to "Blood Typing" in general terms then we are usually talking about the ABO blood type system.  The most common of the antigens (antibody

producing proteins) that are found on the surface of red blood cells in humans can be roughly classed into three families; A, B and O.

 

When a person is classified by blood type, they are referred to as 'Type A', 'Type B', 'Type AB' or 'Type O'. Each person inherits one gene for their blood type from each of their parents.

 

The gene for 'Type A' and 'Type B' are equally dominant and the gene for 'Type O' is recessive. This means that If a person is Type A, then they could have a genetic pairing of either 'AA' or 'AO' because the 'Type A' disguises the 'O' gene.  The same goes for 'Type B'.  Only if the person has both genes as 'Type O' can they be classed as 'Type O' due to the lack of a dominant A or B gene.

 

The table below shows how blood types and genetic makeup correspond:

 

Genetic makeup Blood type
AA A
AO A
BB B
BO B
AB AB
OO O

 

1. What is a blood type? 

2. How blood types are inherited

3. The Rh blood type system - positive or negative

4. Paternity testing and blood types

5. Examples of blood type inheritance

6. A quick history lesson

 

 

 

 

 

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