Research Highlight

Rh positive susceptible to chikungunya

doi:10.1038/nindia.2009.157 Published online 17 June 2009

Rh positive blood groups are more susceptible to chikungunya fever over Rh negative individuals are resistant to it, a new study suggests1. Also, people with 'O' positive blood group are more susceptible to infection by the virus than people of other blood groups, the research says.

The researchers studied genetic predisposition to chikungunya fever, based on blood group antigens, on 100 families affected by the disease. They conducted blood group (ABO) tests by focusing on individuals who were likely to have a risk of chikungunya and identified the blood group involved in susceptibility/resistance to chikungunya.

The individuals were screened under four groups — A, B, AB and O. The result obtained showed that all Rh positive blood group individuals were susceptible to chikungunya fever.

Among ABO groups, O +ve individuals were found to bemore susceptible to chikungunya than other blood groups. No blood group with Rh negative was affected with chikungunya, indicating more resistance to chikungunya.


  1. Sudarsanareddy, L. et al. Genetic predisposition to chikungunya - a blood group study in chikungunya affected families. Virol. J. 6, doi: 10.1186/1743-422X-6-77 (2009)