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Citation Information : Immunohematology. Volume 13, Issue 4, Pages 123-131, DOI: https://doi.org/10.21307/immunohematology-2019-727
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Published Online: 09-November-2020
Complement has a complex role in immune mediated red blood cell (RBC) destruction and usually induces extravascular hemolysis of C3bcoated RBCs by erythrophagocytosis and by acting synergistically with cell-bound immunoglobulins. A sensitive two-stage enzyme-linked direct antiglobulin test (ELDAT) was developed and used to measure RBC-bound C3b and C3d in 120 healthy adult individuals and in 60 patients suffering from a variety of conditions, including warm- and cold-type autoimmune hemolytic anemia, neoplasia, and collagen diseases. The results were compared with those of standard agglutination tests employing polyclonal and monoclonal antiglobulin reagents. Small amounts of C3b and C3d were detected on RBCs of the healthy individuals only by the ELDAT and probably reflected the continuing low-grade activation of complement necessary for the maintenance of homeostasis of a variety of physiological systems. The quantity did not vary with age or gender. In the patients, increased amounts of RBCbound C3b and C3d were relatively common and probably resulted from autoantibody activity, immune-complexes, and nonspecific adsorption. There was no association between positive ELDAT results and the presence of active hemolysis. The ELDAT was far more sensitive than the agglutination tests for detecting RBC-bound C3b and also for C3d if the monoclonal reagent was employed.