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The Function of Plasma Proteins

August 1, 2023

Plasma proteins are like superheroes that work best together. 

There are three key types of plasma proteins: Albumins, Immunoglobulins and Fibrinogens. In this blog, we’re breaking down how each plasma protein functions as a component of plasma to fight crime (infection) and help the body maintain its immune system and heal.

What are Albumins? 

Albumins are like the multivitamin of the group – they’re general, well-rounded proteins that are supportive of your body’s overall functioning. They help balance the right amount of water and nutrients in our blood, making sure everything stays in harmony. Additionally, they transport important substances like vitamins and hormones to key parts of the body. 

What are Immunoglobulins?

Immunoglobulins guard the gates to our immune system! They’re antibodies that protect us from harmful invaders, like bacteria and viruses. When bacteria and viruses enter our system, immunoglobulins fight to protect our wellbeing. They make up 35% of plasma proteins. Immunoglobulins are a subset of globulins, which are just a group of proteins in the blood. Some globulins also work as enzymes, meaning that they help with digestion and metabolism. 

What is Fibrinogen?

Fibrinogen makes up 7% of plasma proteins. One of the essential bodily functions that Fibrinogen supports is blood clotting and coagulation. Fibrinogen converts to insoluble fibre, which helps that blood to clot. When you get injured and blood vessels are damaged, fibrinogen converts into fibrin, a fibrous protein that forms a mesh-like structure. This mesh traps blood cells and platelets, creating a blood clot that helps to stop bleeding. Blood coagulation is crucial for wound healing and preventing excessive blood loss.

Stronger Together: Plasma Protein Superheroes

Overall, plasma proteins help to maintain a variety of bodily functions. The protection that plasma proteins provide our immune system is what makes them essential for patients who require plasma protein therapies as life-sustaining treatments. 

Immunoglobulins support our wellbeing by fighting against viruses and bacteria. Albumins help to regulate blood volume and pressure, by making sure that there’s a proper level of fluids between blood vessels and tissues. This component makes plasma proteins essential for the treatment of trauma victims, because it helps to restore their blood volume and improve recovery. Finally, Fibrinogen is the part of plasma proteins that helps patients with clotting disorders or patients who are having major surgeries. Fibrinogen helps to reduce the risk of dangerous haemorrhages. 
Plasma proteins are amazing, life-sustaining elements of our immune system that keep our bodies healthy. To help patients access the plasma protein therapies and treatments that they need, donate plasma at a Canadian Plasma Resources centre today.