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A centrifuged blood sample in a test tube

A centrifuged blood sample in a test tube

M530/0273

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Credit

BSIP, LBL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY BSIP, LBL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Blood sample. A centrifuged blood sample in a test tube. The orange fluid on top is blood serum. The red matter under this consists mostly of blood cells that have sunk to the bottom of the test tube during centrifuging. Blood serum consists of water, salts, glucose, and proteins such as anti- bodies. It is sometimes separated from blood cells to test for particular antibodies, as in the test for HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus, the cause of AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome)). The centrifuge separates heavy particles like blood cells from liquid by spinning the sample round at very high speed.

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