Red cell age-related changes of hemoglobins AIa+b and AIc in normal and diabetic subjects

J Clin Invest. 1976 Oct;58(4):820-4. doi: 10.1172/JCI108534.


The minor hemoglobin components, hemoglobin AIa+b and hemoglobin AIc, were measured in the 10% youngest and 10% oldest erythrocytes of 15 normal and 14 diabetic subjects. Erythrocyte fractions were obtained by centrifugation in isopyknic concentrations of dextran: 28.5% of 40,000-mol wt dextran yeilded the 10% lightest of young cells, and 30.5% dextran provided the 10% heaviest or old erythrocytes. Both normal and diabetic erythrocytes contain increased amounts of Hb AIa+b and Hb AIc in old as compared to young cells. In normal subjects, young cells contained 1.2+/-0.2%, and old cells contained 1.8+/-0.4% Hb AIa+b. Corresponding values for diabetic cells were 1.7+/-0.6 and 2.6+/-0.9%. Hb AIc increased from 3.1+/-0.8 to 6.0+/-1.1% in normals and from 5.1+/-2.1 to 10.1+/-3.7% in diabetics. The results indicate that both cell age and diabetes are significant determinants of the amounts of Hb AIa+b and Hb AIc.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood Glucose
  • Diabetes Mellitus / blood*
  • Erythrocyte Aging*
  • Erythrocytes / analysis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Blood Glucose