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    Blood typing and crossmatching are most commonly done to make certain that a person who needs a transfusion will receive blood that matches (is compatible with) his own. People must receive blood of the same blood type, otherwise, a serious, even fatal, transfusion reaction can occur.

    Parents who are expecting a baby have their blood typed to diagnose and prevent hemolytic disease of the newborn (HDN), a type of anemia also known as erythroblastosis fetalis. Babies who have a blood type different from their mothers are at risk for developing this disease. The disease is serious with certain blood type differences, but is milder with others.

    A child inherits factors or genes from each parent that determine his blood type. This fact makes blood typing useful in paternity testing. To determine whether or not the alleged father could be the true father, the blood types of the child, mother, and alleged father are compared.

    Legal investigations may require typing of blood or other body fluids, such as semen or saliva, to identify persons involved in crimes or other legal matters.

    Source: The Gale Group. Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine, 3rd ed.";

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