The Blood Of Blood And Blood

1157 Words Feb 23rd, 2016 5 Pages
The ABO blood types play an integral role in conducting blood transfusions. Blood is “a complex, living tissue that contains many cell types and proteins” (green). The average adult body is comprised of more than five liters of blood (purple). Blood basically consists of four components, each with a specific function. Almost half of the blood volume is red blood cells, which transport oxygen and other nutrients to the organs and tissues, as well as remove carbon dioxide and other wastes. White blood cells, which are used to fight infections, and platelets, which form blood clots to prevent blood loss only make up about 1% of the total blood volume. The rest of the blood, about 55%, is plasma, the fluid that carries the blood cells, along with proteins, lipids, sugars, enzymes, and other important substances, through the bloodstream (blue). Although all the components are extremely significant, the red blood cells are central in determining a person’s blood type. The surface of red blood cells is covered with antigens. Antigens are substances that stimulate the immune system to fight against unless recognized or appear on the body’s red cells. Therefore, if foreign cells enter the blood stream, for example through a blood transfusion, the body will launch an attack to rid the body of those unfamiliar antigens (purple). While trying to understand why blood transfusions sometimes cause death and sometimes save the person, Karl Landsteiner (1868-1943) discovered the ABO blood…

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