Background and Objectives: Red cell type RhDVa lacks epD1 and 5 and is encoded by hybrid RHD–CE(5)–D alleles. We analyzed RhDVa and RhDVa–like samples in Japanese blood donors. Materials and Methods: Ten RhDVa samples lacked epD1 and 5 and 3 RhDVa–like variants also lacked, epD2 and a part of 6/7. We identified the full–length nucleotide sequences of the complementary DNA (cDNA) synthesized from 4 samples: 3 of type DVa and the 4th a DVa–like variant. Results: Although their sequences differed from each other, all the substitutions were exclusively in exon 5. Three DVa samples had hybrid RHD–CE(5)–D alleles, but the DVa–like variant had a unique nucleotide substitution with a single amino acid change, E233K. Exon 5 of the genomic DNA from all 13 samples was analyzed by sequencing. No other sequences were identified. Conclusion: All RhDVa and RhDVa–like variants had the substitution for E233. E233 seems to be a determinant of epD1 and 5. A new category of RhD variant, DYO, was identified.

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