Near-infrared spectra absorbance of blood from sickle cell patients and normal individuals

Hematology. 2009 Feb;14(1):46-8. doi: 10.1179/102453309X385133.


Limited data are available regarding the physicochemical dynamics of tissue hypoxia in sickle cell disease. Studies using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) have reported that patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) have lower cerebral oxygen saturation values (rSO2) than normal individuals. The reason SCD patients have subnormal rSO2 values is not known. It may be related to the degree of anaemia, sickle haemoglobin, disease complications and the possibility of SCD different NIRS absorbance spectra than normal. This study compared NIRS absorbance spectra of blood with adult haemoglobin AA, sickle haemoglobin SS, and AS. Venous blood was collected from SCD (SS and AS) and non-SCD patients (AA). Whole blood, cell free haemoglobin samples were scanned through the wavelength range of 600-1000 nm. The results showed no different NIRS spectra absorbance between the haemoglobin's AA, SS. It thus appears that lower brain oxygen saturation in sickle cell anaemia patients is related to impaired oxygen carrying capacity or delivery by sickle haemoglobin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anemia, Sickle Cell / blood*
  • Black or African American
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cerebral Cortex / blood supply
  • Cerebral Cortex / metabolism
  • Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Hemoglobin A / metabolism
  • Hemoglobin, Sickle / analysis
  • Hemoglobin, Sickle / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Oximetry / methods
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Spectrophotometry, Infrared
  • Spectroscopy, Near-Infrared / methods*


  • Hemoglobin, Sickle
  • hemoglobin AA
  • hemoglobin AS
  • Hemoglobin A
  • Oxygen