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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Hemoglobinopathies: Hemoglobin S Disorders. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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The Sickling Process

Normally, there is no interaction between hemoglobin molecules. The substitution of valine for glutamic acid in the beta six position allows for an abnormal interaction between the beta chains, in which the beta 6 valine fits into a pocket between beta 85 and beta 88 on an adjacent molecule.