JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Blood platelet donation. Woman blood donor donates platelets at an apheresis clinic. In the foreground is an apheresis machine which separates out blood components. Tubes from the woman's arm show red blood emerging from, and being returned to, the bloodstream. By the process of apheresis, blood is collected from the patient's arm and centrifuged. The red cells are returned to the donor, while platelets with some plasma (yellow) are collected in the sterile blood bag in front of the machine. Platelets play an important role in normal blood clotting. Platelet donations are given to leukaemia patients who cannot produce enough platelets of their own.
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