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Blood Types

Blood Types

Description:

This lesson will identify and describe the four main blood types.

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Tutorial

What's Covered

This lesson will discuss the four main blood types, and what types are compatible with each other by looking at:

  1. Different Blood Types
  2. Type A
  3. Type B
  4. Type AB
  5. Type O

1. Different Blood Types

Blood type is determined by the antigens that are present on the plasma membrane of red blood cells.

Term to Know

    • Antigen
    • A unique marker on the surface of a cell that can stimulate an immune response.

There are four main blood types referred to as ABO blood typing:

  • Type A
  • Type B
  • Type AB
  • Type O

The antigens that can be on a blood cell and determine blood type are:

  • A antigen
  • B antigen
  • Both A and B antigens.

There are different antibodies associated with some of the blood types as well that limit which blood types can be donated to each other.

Term to Know

    • Antibody
    • Specific protein markers that are created by the immune system for binding and reacting to specific antigens.

2. Type A

Type A blood has A antigens on the red blood cell, and has anti-B antibodies.

Think About It

What happens if someone with type A blood receives a transfusion from someone with type B blood?

If somebody with type A blood was transfused with type B blood, these anti-B antibodies would identify those blood cells and attach to them, rendering them ineffective. What would happen would be something called agglutination. Agglutination occurs when incompatible blood types mix. Type B red blood cells will clump, and can even burst at the same time because they're incompatible.

Term to Know

    • Agglutination
    • The high class term for clumping.

Someone with type A blood can donate to somebody else with type A blood. They can donate to somebody who has type AB blood because a person who has AB blood has these A antigens on their red blood cell as well.

Somebody with type A blood can receive from somebody else with type A blood because it's going to be just the same. Or they can receive from somebody who has type O blood, because type O blood doesn't have any antigens on it.


3. Type B

Somebody who has type B blood has B antigens with anti-A antibodies. As with type A, someone with type B blood can donate to the same type or to type AB. Someone who has type B blood can receive blood from the same type, because the antigens are going to be the same, or they can receive from type O.


4. Type AB

Somebody who has type AB blood is going to have both A and B antigens. Somebody who has type AB blood doesn't have any antibodies in the blood.

Think About It

Given what we know so far, who do you think type AB can donate to?

So somebody with type AB blood can only donate to somebody else who has type AB blood. Here’s an example to show why: let's say somebody has type A blood, and they are transfused with AB blood. Those anti-B antibodies would attack the B antigens on this blood cell. Same goes for someone who is type B.

Type AB can actually receive blood from any type. This makes them the universal recipient.

Term to Know

    • Universal Recipient
    • The blood type AB; type AB blood contains both A & B surface antigens which means that a person with this blood type won’t have any A or B antibodies in their blood.

5. Type O

Type O blood doesn't have any antigens on the red blood cell, but they do have antibodies then for type A and type B. So if a person with type O blood was transfused with either type A, Type B, or type AB blood, these antibodies would cause, again, agglutination. Type O blood can only receive blood from a type O donor.

Type O blood, on the other hand, can donate to all blood types because the antibodies in these other types of red blood cells have nothing to attack. Type O is referred to as the universal donor.

Term to Know

    • Universal Donor
    • The blood type O; type O blood contains no surface antigens so there is nothing for the immune system to reject.

Summary

bloodtypes.jpg

There are four different types of blood: A, B, AB, and O. Blood type is determined by the antigen on the red blood cell. There are three different types of antigens that can be on a cell: A, B, and both A and B. If incompatible blood is transfused into someone agglutination would occur. Type A blood has A antigens and contains anti-B antibodies. It can only donate blood to another type A or to type AB. A person with type A blood can receive from another type A person or someone with type O blood. Type B is the same. A person with this blood type can only give to someone with the same blood type or type AB. They could only receive from someone who is the same or type O. Type AB blood is the universal recipient, but can only donate to the same blood type. Someone with Type O can only receive from the same blood type, but is a universal donor.

Keep up the learning and have a great day!

Source: SOURCE: THIS WORK IS ADAPTED FROM SOPHIA AUTHOR AMANDA SODERLIND

TERMS TO KNOW
  • Antibody

    Specific protein markers that are created by the immune system for binding and reacting to specific antigens.

  • Antigen

    A unique marker on the surface of a cell that can stimulate an immune response.

  • Agglutination

    The high class term for clumping.

  • Universal Recipient

    The blood type AB; type AB blood contains both A & B surface antigens which means that a person with this blood type won’t have any A or B antibodies in their blood.

  • Universal Donor

    The blood type O; type O blood contains no surface antigens so there is nothing for the immune system to reject.