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November 11, 1983

Medicolegal Application of Human Blood Grouping: Second Communication

JAMA. 1983;250(18):2527-2531. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340180081036

In 1910, von Dungern and Hirschfeld1 discovered that the substances A and B present in human red blood cells (on whose presence or absence the so-called blood grouping depends) are inherited according to Mendel's law. They studied 348 persons belonging to seventy-two different families. (The families were those of university professors or members of their research institute, and each family is identified in their article.)

They observed that:

  1. A never occurs in a child if not present in one of the parents; the same is true of B.

  2. When one of these substances is present in both parents, it occurs in most of the children.

  3. When only one parent has one of these particular substances, some of the children inherit it.

  4. When a particular substance is absent from both parents, no child ever has it.

They were forced to the conclusion that Mendel's law holds for these blood qualities, on