What is the nomenclature used in Rhesus (Rh) typing?

Updated: Aug 01, 2018
  • Author: Victoria K Gonsorcik, DO; Chief Editor: Jun Teruya, MD, DSc, FCAP  more...
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Answer

Answer

It is important to note that the Rh blood group system has more than one accepted nomenclature. Most of this review uses the Fisher-Race nomenclature, which designates the antigens with letters DCE in either upper or lower case. The Weiner system uses the letters R, r; subscript y (y); z; the numbers 1, 2, 0; and symbols for prime (', "). These two nomenclatures are listed in the tables below.

Table 1. Rh Haplotype Frequencies (Open Table in a new window)

Fisher-Race Common Rh Red Cell Antigens

Weiner Common Rh Red Cell Antigens

White, %

Black, %

Asian American, %

Dce

R0

4

44

3

DCe

R1

42

17

70

DcE

R2

14

11

21

DCE

Rz

0.2

0

1

"d"ce

r

37

26

3

"d"Ce

r'

2

2

2

"d"cE

r"

1

< 0.01

< 0.01

"d"CE

ry

< 0.01

< 0.01

< 0.01

Adapted from Westhoff C. ABO, H, and Lewis blood groups and structurally related antigens and methods. In: Roback J, Coombs MR, Grossman B, Hillyer C, eds. Technical Manual. 16th ed. Bethesda, MD: American Association of Blood Banks (AABB); 2008. [3]

"d" = an individual who does not express the D antigen.

Table 2. Rh Phenotype Frequencies (Open Table in a new window)

Antigens:

Fisher-Race

Phenotype:

Weiner System

White, %

Black, %

Asian, %

Rh-positive

DCe

R1R1 (R1r')

18.5

2.0

51.8

DcE

R2R2 (R2r")

2.3

0.2

4.4

DCce

R1r (R1R0;R0r')

34.9

21.0

8.5

DcEe

R2r (R2R0;R0r")

11.8

18.6

2.5

Dce

R0r (R0R0)

2.1

45.8

0.3

DCE

RzRz (Rzry)

0.01

Rare

Rare

DCEe

R1Rz (Rzr'R1ry)

0.2

Rare

1.4

DCcE

R2Rz (Rzr";R2ry)

0.1

Rare

0.4

DCcEe

R1R2 (R1r";R2r'Rzr;R0Rz;R0ry)

13.3

4.0

30.0

Rh-negative

Cce

r'r

0.8

Rare

0.1

Ce

r'r'

Rare

Rare

0.1

cEe

r"r

0.9

Rare

Rare

cE

r"r"

Rare

Rare

Rare

ce

rr

15.1

6.8

0.1

CcE

r'r" (ryr)

0.05

Rare

Rare

CcEe

r'ry; r"ry;ryry

Rare

Rare

Rare

Adapted from Reid ME, Lomas-Francis C. The Blood Group Antigen Facts Book. 2nd ed. San Diego, CA: Academic Press; 2003. [4]


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