Q:

What is the function of hemoglobin?

A:

Quick Answer

InnovateUs states that the main function of hemoglobin is transporting oxygen from the lungs to other parts of the body. It is an important chemical in red blood cells that carries oxygen, and performs different effect modulation and gas transport duties.

Continue Reading
What is the function of hemoglobin?
Credit: DAVID MCCARTHY Science Photo Library Getty Images

Full Answer

The most essential task of hemoglobin is binding oxygen to it, explains InnovateUs. The higher the amount of oxygen molecules that bind to hemoglobin, the more oxygen reaches all parts of the body. With the help of external chemical factors such as carbon dioxide, pH and DPG (2, 3-diphosphoglycerate), the hemoglobin molecules take up oxygen molecules in the lungs and send them to different tissues in the body.

On HowStuffWorks, Carl Bianco explains that oxygen is released in the capillaries to be used by the body cells. Hemoglobin carries 97 percent of the oxygen that is transported by the blood from the lungs, while the remaining three percent is dissolved in the plasma. It combines loosely with oxygen in the lungs, which has high levels of oxygen, and releases the oxygen in the capillaries, where oxygen levels are low. Every molecule of hemoglobin consists of four iron atoms, and each iron atom is capable of binding with one molecule of oxygen. The iron contained in hemoglobin gives blood a red color.

Learn more about Blood

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why is blood red?

    A:

    The red color of blood comes from the hemoglobin that makes up the majority of the mass of the cell, which allows the blood cell to carry oxygen around the body. The plasma itself is a straw color when viewed under a microscope, but the hemoglobin makes up so much of the blood cell that its red color overpowers the color of the plasma. When a red blood cell is full of oxygen, the red has a scarlet tint to it, when it has released it's oxygen its more of a dark burgundy color.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How are red blood cells specialized?

    A:

    According to Springfield Technical Community College, the primary role red blood cells play in the body is to transport oxygen from the lungs to the various body tissues. To carry out this task, the cells are filled with a substance called hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is so important to red blood cells that its molecules comprise one-third of the cell’s volume.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does the circulatory system do?

    A:

    The main function of the circulatory system is transporting blood, oxygen, hormones, nutrients and other important substances throughout the body. The circulatory system is actually two separate systems of circulation, pulmonary and systemic, both of which interact with the heart and cardiovascular system to pump blood throughout that system.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the function of liquid connective tissue?

    A:

    The function of liquid connective tissue is to transport nutrients, oxygen and other gases, defend the body against pathogens and maintain inflammatory process. This involves lymphatic fluid and blood products, both of which play an important role in homeostasis.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore