Many individuals, especially of West African descent, suffer from the crippling and often lethal sickle cell disease. The glutamic acid present at position 6 in the β-chain of hemoglobin A (HbA) is substituted by valine forming hemoglobin S (HbS). This single base change leads to sickling of cell. Specifically, HbS crystallizes in red blood cells when deoxygenated, resulting in distortion of the cell into the sickle shape. In this kit, erythrocytes are lysed by saponin, which releases HbS. The HbS is subsequently reduced by sodium dithionite. This reduced HbS has very low solubility, which makes the buffer solution turbulent and visually detectable.