IAN H. PORTER, M.B., B.S.
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Glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) is the enzyme that catalyzes the first step in the pentose phosphate shunt. This enzyme attracted much medical interest when it was discovered that "primaquine sensitivity" was due to deficiency of this enzyme (1). Excitement was heightened when it was found that G6PD deficiency is an X-linked genetic condition (2, 3) and that it is common in Negroes and whites of Mediterranean origin which suggests, as in the case of the sickle cell gene, that its presence may be of some advantage.
When a genetic condition is examined closely it usually turns out to be heterogeneous.
PORTER IH. Variants of Glucose 6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase. Ann Intern Med. ;68:250–252. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-68-1-250
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1968;68(1):250-252.
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