Blood Plasma| Definition, components and functions

Plasma in blood, what is blood plasma
Blood plasma
  • What is Blood plasma ?

Blood consists of watery fluid which is  called plasma . It contains salts , enzymes and proteins. And it has antibodies that helps to  fight infection . Plasma is larger portion in blood ; nearly 55% . Even through blood appears red  when you see it outside the body but inside it is pale yellow in colour .

                             It containing certain floating bodies termed formed elements . The formed elements include blood cells or corpuscles (erythrocytes or red blood cells and leucocytes or white blood cells and blood platelets or thrombocytes ) . Plasma helps carry proteins, hormones and nutrients to different cells in our body. These include growth hormones that helps our muscles and bones grow , as well as clotting factors that help to stop bleeding when cut in our body.

  • What is Blood plasma made up of ?

Blood plasma is made up of  90% water ,7-8% soluble proteins( albumin maintains bloods osmotic integrity , other clot , etc.),1% electrolytes and 1% elements in transit  and remaining 1 or 2% of the plasma is formed by food materials,waste products, dissolved gases , regulatory substances,anticoagulant, cholesterol and antibodies.

                 One percent of the plasma is salt ,which helps with the pH of the blood. The largest group  of solutes on plasma contains three important proteins , which are albumins , globulins and clotting proteins .

Albumins are the most common group of  proteins in plasma and consist of nearly two-thirds of them ( 60-80%) . They are produced in the liver . The main functions of albumins is to maintain the osmotic balance between the blood and tissue fluids and is called colloid osmotic pressure . Albumins assist  in transport of different materials, such as vitamins and certain molecules and drugs (e.g. bilirubin, fatty acids and penicillin ).

Globulins are a diverse  group of proteins , designated into three groups – gamma , alpha and beta . The main function is to transport various substances in the blood. Gamma globulins assist the body’s  immune system in defence against infections and illness.

Clotting proteins are mainly produced in the liver as well . There are atleast 12 substances, known as ‘clotting factor’ that participate in the clotting process . One important clotting protein that are parts of this group is fibrinogen , one of the main components in the formation of blood clots. In response to tissue damage , fibrinogen makes fibrin threads, which serve as adhesive in binding platelets, red blood cells and other molecules together, to stop the blood flow .

  • What is colour of plasma and why ?

The colour of  plasma in blood is faint yellow , slightly alkaline , somewhat viscous fluid . The plasma colour is yellow because of presence yellow pigments bilirubin , carotenoids, haemoglobin and iron transferrin .

Blood plasma color , colour of blood plasma
Colour of blood plasma
  • What are function of plasma in blood ?
  1. Transport of  lipids , hormones, vitamins and minerals in activity and functioning of the immune system.
  2. Maintain the osmotic balance between the blood and tissue fluids.
  3. Transport of different materials , such as vitamins and certain molecules and drugs.
  4. Transport various substances in the blood.
  5. Plasma helps the body immune system in defense against infections and illness .
  6. The main function of plasma is formation of blood clots .
  7. Forming blood clots to prevent excess blood loss.
  8. Carrying cells  and antibodies that fight infection.
  • How is Plasma obtained ? 

Blood Plasma is produced by separated from the blood by spinning  a tube of  fresh blood containing an anticoagulant .The blood does note clot in plasma tube ,the cells are removed by centrifugation .The supernatant, designated plasma  is carefully removed from the cell pellet using Pasture pipette .

  • How is Plasma different from blood ?
Blood is the main mobile fluid connective tissue and responsible for transporting important nutrients, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and waste products to and away from the cells .

       Plasma is a faint yellow liquid components and  constitutes 55% of the total blood volume.
  Blood consists of plasma,red blood cells,white blood cells and platelets .
                       Plasma consists of water , proteins, nutrients, waste products, clotting factors , minerals , immunoglobulin , hormones and carbon dioxide .
Colour :-
    Blood colour is  red but plasma colour is faint yellow .
Cells :- In blood cells are present i.e red ,white blood cells and platelets but in plasma these cells are not present .
Nature :- Nature of blood and plasma is both same i.e. alkaline or basic. And pH is 7.4  .
Clotting factors :-  Clotting factors are present in both Blood and Plasma.
  • Why do people donate plasma ?

Blood plasma is treated for many modern medical therapies . This is commonly given to trauma , burn and shock patients, as well as people with servere liver diseases or  multiple clotting factor deficiencies . Blood plasma is treatment for immune system conditions, bleeding and respiratory disorders as well as blood transfusions and wound healing . Blood plasma helps to boost the patients blood volume, which prevents the shocks and help to blood clotting. Blood plasma  donation is necessary to collect enough plasma for medical treatment .

  • What diseases does plasma treat ?
Blood plasma is treated by following diseases .
1- Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency Caused by missing alpha -1 proteinase inhibitors ,alpha -1 proteinase  inhibitor protects  the lungs , patients have chronic emphysema and liver damage .

2-  Primary Immunodeficieny disease (PID)
Caused by  missing immunoglobulins (antibodies ) , antibodies control the immune system and prevent illness , patients are chronically ill from  severe , persistent , recurrent infection.
 3-Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneusoropathy (CIDP)
CIDP causes not certain ; immune system attacks nerve coating, massage from the brain are not delivered to the body if nerve coating is damaged , patients experience progressive weakness , loss of limb function and disability .
4- Hereditary angioedema
Caused by missing C1 esterase  inhibitor protein  (C1- INH ) C1-INH helps regulate inflammation , patients have  edema (severe swelling ) which  can be fatal  if airway is obstructed .
5- Bleeding disorders ( hemophilia )
Caused by missing clotting factor protein ,theses disorder are characterized by recurrent bleeding episodes, primarily into the joints and muscles .
  • What is difference between plasma and serum ?

Plasma vs serum
Difference between plasma and serum
  1. Definition :-  Plasma  is faint yellow and slightly alkaline  fluid ,in which blood cells float whereas Serum is clearly yellow fluid seperated when blood is allowed to clot freely .                                                   
  2. Composition :- Plasma contains all suspended  blood cells  with proteins , salts , lipids and glucose whereas Serum contains proteins, electrolytes , antibodies , antigens and hormones .                              
  3. Water content :- Plasma contains 92-95% of water whereas Serum contains 90% of water .                                                 
  4. Fibrinogen :- In  plasma fibrinogen is present  whereas in serum  fibrinogen is absent .                                                        
  5. Density :- The density of plasma is 1.025g/ml whereas the density of serum is 1.024 g/ml .                                    
  6. Clotting factors :- Plasma is the blood fluid that contains blood – clotting agents whereas Serum is the watery fluid from blood without the clotting factors .                                                           
  7. Uses :- Plasma is  delivered to  the patients who lack blood cells it is also transferred to patients who suffer from hemophilia , shocks , burns and other clotting . Whereas Human serum is usually used for the purpose of  diagnostic  .Other  animal serum are used   as anti – venom ,anti – toxin and vaccination .
  • Does  plasma therapy is help to critical ill to COVID -19 patients ?

    COVID-19 disease 2019  is a highly infectious respiratory illness caused by a newly recognised type of cornavirus . People infected with this virus may not show signs of the disease ,other may develop symptoms, including fever ,cough , shortness of breath and sore throat . Currently ,no vaccine  or treatment is available . People who have recovered from COVID-19 develop natural defences to the disease in their blood( in the form of antibodies ). Antibodies are found in part of the blood called plasma . Plasma from blood donated from recovered patients , which contains COVID-19 antibodies can be used to make two preparation . Firstly  , convalescent plasma , which is plasma that contains these antibodies . Secondly ,hyperimmune immunoglobulin ,which is more concentrated,and therefore contains more antibodies .

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