PAUL RAPSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL RAPSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Centrifuged blood in a vacutainer tube. A centrifuge is a machine that spins its contents around a central axis at very high speeds. The force created by the spinning separates groups of particles according to their densities. Centrifuged blood is separated into red blood cells (bottom), white blood cells (middle) and plasma (top). The constituents can then be analysed for signs of illness or infection or for blood type.
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