Centrifugation Information and Courses from MediaLab, Inc.
These are the MediaLab courses that cover Centrifugation and links to relevant pages within the course.
Learn more about laboratory continuing education for medical technologists to earn CE credit for AMT, ASCP, NCA, and state license renewal and recertification. Or get information about laboratory safety and compliance courses that deliver cost-effective OSHA safety training and continuing education to your laboratory's employees.
|Products Used to Facilitate Antibody Identification|
Monospecific anti-human globulin (IgG) enables sensitized red cells to cross-link so that agglutination is visible.Enhancement media are sometimes used to further promote agglutination and reduce incubation time. Low ionic strength saline (LISS) is the most common enhancement media. LISS reduces the ionic strength in the testing sample and causes reduction of the zeta potential. It increases antibody uptake and decreases incubation time. Polyethylene glycol (PEG): brings red blood cells (RBCs) closer together and concentrates antibodies by removing water molecules from the testing sample. It is the most sensitive of the enhancement media; strengthening almost all clinically significant antibodies. However, it will also enhance some clinically insignificant antibodies as well. Centrifugation should be avoided when PEG is used. PEG can cause aggregates to form if the sample (red cell - serum mixture) with PEG added is centrifuged. Reaction readings should only be done at the AHG phase. 22% albumin: reduces zeta potential, bringing the RBCs closer together and enhancing agglutination. Albumin does not contribute much to antibody uptake. Longer incubation time is needed with this media than with the previously discussed media. Detection of some IgG antibodies can be enhanced with enzyme test methods. Proteolytic enzymes (papain and ficin) denature some RBC antigens and remove negative charges from the RBC membranes. This reduces the zeta potential, bringing the cells closer together. Enzyme techniques are particularly useful in the identification of Rh antibodies and antibodies in the Kidd, Lewis, P and I systems. However, enzymes destroy some antigens including Fya, Fyb, M, and N. The effect of proteolytic enzymes on the S and s antigens are variable.
|Significance of Reactions at Different Phases of Testing|
Antibodies have optimum temperatures for reactivity. Reaction readings can be made at different phases: after immediate spin, after incubation at 37°C, and after the addition of antihuman globulin (AHG) and centrifugation. Reactivity in a certain phase will help to determine whether the antibody is cold reacting (IgM) or warm reacting (IgG). It will also help to distinguish between antibodies that are clinically significant and not significant. Clinically significant antibodies that are capable of causing acute and delayed hemolytic transfusion reactions (HTR) or hemolytic disease of the newborn (HDN) are usually IgG and react best in the AHG phase.Readings can be done at all three phases if a tube method is used. If a gel method is used, readings are done only at AHG. Immediate spin: Antibodies reacting in this phase tend to be cold reactive. They are usually IgM class and not clinically significant (with the exception of the A and B antibodies). 37°: Antibodies that react in this phase include strong IgM or IgG antibodies. After incubation, the tubes are examined for the presence of hemolysis. If complement was bound during incubation then hemolysis could be seen. NOTE: This reaction would only occur in serum samples. If EDTA plasma samples are used for testing, the complement cascade has been halted. Magnesium and calcium ions are not available for complement to be activated. AHG:Antibodies reacting in this phase are considered clinically significant. They are usually warm reactive and IgG.
|The cytospin technique perfectly preserves the morphology of blood cells in a fluid sample.||View Page|
|Which of the following situations indicate a clot is most likely due to a traumatic tap?||View Page|
|Mixing Study: Specimen Requirements|
The specimen drawn for a mixing study must meet the following conditions for accurate testing: A properly filled 3.2% sodium citrate tube must be collected. Proper centrifugation to create platelet-poor plasma for analysis must occur; the presence of platelet phospholipids can interfere with the mixing study if an anti-phospholipid antibody is present. Testing must be performed within 4 hours of collection.
Antibodies of the ABO system cause agglutination of saline-suspended red cells at 4°C to 20°C. Heating to 37°C weakens the reaction. "Naturally" occurring ABO antibodies may not be strong enough to agglutinate cells without centrifugation. Thus, testing serum for the presence of anti-A or anti-B has classically been performed using the tube system in which serum and cells added to a test tube are centrifuged and then evaluated for agglutination. A slide test has also been performed for forward reactions. Although tube tests are still in wide use, newer systems utilizing other technology such as gel agglutination are becoming more prevalent. The image on this page illustrates agglutination reactions observed with the tube system, from 4+ in the topmost image, to 0 in the lowest image. ABO reactions should be strong. Weak or missing reactions occur, but must be "resolved" before blood products can be released.4+ agglutination: Red blood cell button is a solid agglutinate; clear background.3+ agglutination: Red blood cell button breaks into several large agglutinates; clear background.2+ agglutination: Red blood cell button breaks into many medium-sized agglutinates; clear background; no free red blood cells.1+ agglutination: Red blood cell button breaks into many small clumps barely visible macroscopically; background is turbid; many free red blood cells.Negative: No agglutinated red blood cells present; red cells are observed flowing off the red blood cell button during the process of grading.Other reaction which may occur are the mixed-field reaction, in which mixtures of agglutinated and unagglutinated red blood are present; and hemolysis, in which red cells are hemolyzed by the antibody. Both of these patterns are considered positive reactions.
Forward typing is done using known antisera to detect ABO antigens present on the patient’s red cells. In the tube test, known antisera and patient cells are placed in labeled test tubes, centrifuged, and observed for agglutination. Each manufacturer has specific instructions for its own antisera, detailing the percent of cell suspension, number of drops of cell suspension versus number of drops of antisera, and the rate and length of centrifugation. Though the details differ, the theory behind the tests is the same.
|Analytic Medical Errors|
Medical errors also occur in the analytic processes and systems of patient care.
Analytic errors begin with problems in the transportation of medical samples for testing. These occur between the patient's location and the testing facility. They happen during the time between specimen collection and arrival in the testing facility.
The possibility for analytic medical error continues through the analytic processes and procedures of medical testing.
Analytic medical error also includes systems, processes, and procedures involved in the transmission and reporting of test results.
These medical errors occur during the time the laboratory is directly involved in receiving, analyzing, and reporting test samples.
Wrong transport storage or temperature
Delay in transport
Sample mixup during transport
Acceptance of unacceptable samples that are insufficient, hemolyzed, or clotted
Centrifugation, mixing, and other test sample preparation errors
Wrong test procedures
Test control errors
Sample mixup during testing
Test result mixup
Data reporting process errors
Result report delays
|Speckle top tubes|
Also known as serum separator tubes, tiger top tubes or red gray tubes.
Contain a serum-cell separator gel which separates serum from clotted blood cells during and after centrifugation.
Plasma and formed elements stay mixed in circulating blood.
When centrifuged (or spun down), blood is separated into plasma, and formed elements including red blood cells. The plasma separator tube shown here has a barrier to maintain separation of plasma and cellular elements during centrifugation and storage.
The red cell layer also includes a relatively small amount of platelets and white blood cells, not visible in the photo on the right.
|Blood Collection Tubes|
Most blood collection tubes contain an additive that either accelerates clotting of the blood (clot activator) or prevents the blood from clotting (anticoagulant). A tube that contains a clot activator will produce a serum sample when the blood is separated by centrifugation and a tube that contains an anticoagulant will produce a plasma sample after centrifugation. Some tests require the use of serum, some require plasma, and other tests require anticoagulated whole blood. The table below lists the most commonly used blood collection tubes. Tube cap color Additive Function of Additive Common laboratory tests Light-blue 3.2% Sodium citrate Prevents blood from clotting by binding calcium Coagulation Red or gold (mottled or "tiger" top used with some tubes is not shown) Serum tube with or without clot activator or gel Clot activator promotes blood clotting with glass or silica particles. Gel separates serum from cells. Chemistry, serology, immunology Green Sodium or lithium heparin with or without gel Prevents clotting by inhibiting thrombin and thromboplastin Stat and routine chemistry Lavender or pink Potassium EDTA Prevents clotting by binding calcium Hematology and blood bank Gray Sodium fluoride, and sodium or potassium oxalate Fluoride inhibits glycolysis, and oxalate prevents clotting by precipitating calcium. Glucose (especially when testing will be delayed), blood alcohol, lactic acid
|The volume of urine recommended for centrifugation for a microscopic examination is:||View Page|