Serum vs. Plasma (17 Major Differences)

Differences between Serum and Plasma
S.N.CharacteristicsSerum Plasma
1.DefinitionThe clear yellow fluid separated when blood is allowed to clot freely.Yellowish and slight alkaline fluid, in which blood cells float.
2.Clotting factorsIt is the watery fluid from blood without the clotting factors.It is the blood fluid that contains blood-clotting agents.
3.CompositionThe serum contains proteins, electrolytes, antibodies, antigens, and hormones.It contains all suspended blood cells with proteins, salts, lipids, glucose.
4.Water contentThe serum contains 90% water.Plasma contains 92-95% of water.
5.ComponentsThe serum contains proteins like albumin and globulins.Plasma contains clotting factors and water.
6.FibrinogenFibrinogen absent.Fibrinogen present.
7.Cell arrangementCells are usually attached together by clot formation.Cells are not attached together and suspended in plasma.
8.Method of SeparationAcquired from the process of spinning after clotting.Acquired from the process of spinning before clotting.
9.Use of Anti-coagulantAnticoagulant is not needed to separate the serum.Anticoagulant is required to obtain plasma.
10.Feasibility of SeparationSeparation of serum requires higher levels of expertise, expenses and is time-consuming.Separation of plasma is relatively easy and inexpensive
11.Volume in bloodLess volume in comparison to plasma.Consists of 55% of the total volume of blood.
12.DensityThe density of serum is 1.024g/ml.The density of plasma is 1.025g/ml.
13.StorageThe serum can be stored at 2-6 degrees centigrade for several days.Frozen plasma can be stored for up to a year.
14.DiscolorationThe serum does not discolor on standing.Plasma tends to discolor on standing.
15.ImportanceThe serum is the primary source of electrolytes.The function of the plasma is the transport of excretory metabolites and materials in the blood. It also helps in the maintenance of blood pressure and in the regulation of body temperature.
16.Associated termsThe branch of study that deals with studying serum and analyzing it for diagnostic purposes are called serology.Plasmapheresis refers to the process of isolation of plasma from the blood using centrifugation.
17.UsesHuman serum is usually used for the purpose of diagnostic testing. Other animal seras are used as anti-venom, antitoxins, and vaccinations. They are also used in humans for therapeutic purposes.Plasma is delivered to the patients who lack blood cells. It is also Transferred to patients who suffer from hemophilia, shocks, burns, and other clotting problems.

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Sagar Aryal

Sagar Aryal is a microbiologist and a scientific blogger. He is doing his Ph.D. at the Central Department of Microbiology, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal. He was awarded the DAAD Research Grant to conduct part of his Ph.D. research work for two years (2019-2021) at Helmholtz-Institute for Pharmaceutical Research Saarland (HIPS), Saarbrucken, Germany. Sagar is interested in research on actinobacteria, myxobacteria, and natural products. He is the Research Head of the Department of Natural Products, Kathmandu Research Institute for Biological Sciences (KRIBS), Lalitpur, Nepal. Sagar has more than ten years of experience in blogging, content writing, and SEO. Sagar was awarded the SfAM Communications Award 2015: Professional Communicator Category from the Society for Applied Microbiology (Now: Applied Microbiology International), Cambridge, United Kingdom (UK). Sagar is also the ASM Young Ambassador to Nepal for the American Society for Microbiology since 2023 onwards.

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