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December 22/29, 1999

Sickle Cell PoliticsIn the Blood: Sickle Cell Anemia and the Politics of Race

Author Affiliations

Copyright 1999 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.1999American Medical Association

JAMA. 1999;282(24):2369-2370. doi:10.1001/jama.282.24.2369-JBK1222-4-1

In the Blood is a "postmodern" account of medical and other scholarly research on sickling—a disorder that is characterized by thin, elongated, sickle-shaped red blood cells. People who inherit the sickle cell trait from only one parent have no special problems and may benefit from a partial resistance to malaria. However, when both parents have the trait, there is a 25% chance that their offspring will be afflicted with sickle cell anemia—an often fatal disease that is accompanied by severe pain and myriad serious complications.