I have decided to add a page on the physiology of plasma. Mainly because plasma is relatively unrecognized but does play an important role in human physiology and medicine.
Plasma is the largest component in blood, about 55-60% of the blood is plasma.
Plasma consists of water (of course!) and contains salts, many enzymes, nutrients, hormones and waste products.
components such as antibodies, clotting factors, and the most important transport protein: albumin. With this and other similar proteins, plasma can transport all kinds of nutrients etc. to all parts of the body.
And … plasma also transports all kind of waste products, from the cells, to those organs where this waste will be removed (lungs, kidneys, spleen, liver).
So, plasma is used primarily for one thing: TRANSPORT!
In fact, in this web site, we have actually already discussed many facets of the role of plasma. In the next section, I will briefly summarize some of these aspects.
Inside this cytoplasm, all the cellular organelles ‘float’ around inside the cytoplasm, such as mitochondria, lysosomes, ribosomes, and, of course, the nucleus.
Although there is not a specific circulation system inside the cell as there is in the whole body, there are some cellular structures that are involved in a ‘cellular circulation’.
The most important ones are the reticular system (= endoplasmic reticulum) and the Golgi apparatus.
Both these systems are involved in processing specific molecular pathways.
More: A.2.1. panels E and F.