[Clinical and biological features of haptoglobin phenotypes]

Ann Biol Clin (Paris). 2020 Oct 1;78(5):493-498. doi: 10.1684/abc.2020.1590.
[Article in French]


Haptoglobin is a late positive acute phase protein of inflammation. Haptoglobin binds to free hemoglobin released from erythrocytes during intravascular hemolysis to form a complex which is removed shortly. Other properties like inhibition of oxidative stress and prostaglandin synthesis have been described. Three main phenotypes of haptoglobin have been identified: Hp1-1, Hp2-1, Hp2-2, which may have an impact in different diseases such as cardiovascular or infectious diseases. Haptoglobins of different phenotypes can be separated by capillary electrophoresis. They may induce a split of the alpha 2-globulin zone in the electrophoretic pattern. Hp1-1 and Hp2-1 phenotypes induce an important and a moderate split of the α2 globulin zone, respectively, whereas Hp2-2 does not. In vitro hemolysis and migration of a monoclonal component (i.e. immunoglobulin free light chain) may also induce a split of the alpha 2-globulin zone. In daily practice, Hp2-1 or Hp1-1 phenotypes could be notified in the electrophoresis report to alert the clinician about the possible physiopathological consequences.

Keywords: electrophoresis; haemolysis; haptoglobin; phenotype.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases / blood
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / diagnosis
  • Communicable Diseases / blood
  • Communicable Diseases / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Tests, Routine
  • Electrophoresis / methods
  • Haptoglobins / analysis*
  • Haptoglobins / chemistry
  • Haptoglobins / metabolism
  • Hemoglobins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / blood
  • Inflammation / diagnosis
  • Phenotype*


  • Haptoglobins
  • Hemoglobins