HopePressler1
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Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2018 12:20 pm
Occupation: Parent

Blood Cell Science Fair Project

Postby HopePressler1 » Tue Oct 20, 2020 8:42 am

My daughter wants to do a science fair project that involves looking at blood cells under a microscope. We have a good microscope that would work for this project. She is having difficulty developing the exact question. Would the question - does the blood of all members of an immediate family look the same under the microscope - be a good question? That seems a little too vague to me. Would it be better to type the blood and ask a question about blood types? Is there another question you would suggest she could ask about blood?

Thank you,
Hope

koneill18
Expert
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Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 8:22 am
Occupation: Other Adult

Re: Blood Cell Science Fair Project

Postby koneill18 » Tue Oct 20, 2020 7:37 pm

Hello!

Unless someone in the family has a blood disease, like sickle cell anemia, all of the blood cells are probably going to look the same under normal conditions. Maybe your daughter could do an experiment where she takes some blood samples and adds different substances from around the house to see how the cells react. For example, she could add ingredients like salt, vinegar, or oil and see if the blood cells change shape or look any different afterwards. As another option, your daughter could look at blood samples under the microscope and try to identify the 3 different types of blood cells- red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets- and maybe see if there are differences between the different family members.

A blood typing experiment could be a good idea too. Blood typing is important for making sure that a person getting a blood transfusion is receiving blood that is compatible with their blood type. Maybe your daughter could test whether or not the different members of her family have blood types that are compatible with her own. Here is a link to a Science Buddies experiment talking about blood typing.
https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science- ... background

I hope this helps!

cnoonan180
Student Expert
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Occupation: Student

Re: Blood Cell Science Fair Project

Postby cnoonan180 » Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:06 pm

Hello!

This is a very interesting project idea!

One idea for a red blood cell project would be similar to my fellow mentor's suggestion: a blood-typing project. This type of project would use artificial blood samples, for example, a mixture of food coloring and milk. Then, based on the artificial blood samples' reactions to anti-sera (mixtures used to determine which antigens (surface proteins that determine blood type) are on the surface of red blood cells), or in this case, using water and vinegar as anti-sera, to observe how the artificial blood samples react to the water and vinegar anti-sera. Will the artificial blood sample (milk) coagulate? Did it have no reaction to the anti-sera? These observations and some extra information (usually in the form of tables) will help determine the blood type and give insight into the structure of the types of proteins on the surfaces of red blood cells.

This project idea is easy to perform at home with materials that can generally be found in the kitchen while providing an understanding of the way proteins on the surface of red blood cells look in terms of the different antigens (surface proteins) that define different blood types.

Definitely check out the link my fellow mentor provided, and here's the PDF version which contains the tables I referred to before that will help you determine the "blood-type" of your artificial blood samples:

(PDF Version: http://www.sciencebuddies.org/Content/P ... 131216.pdf)

Hope this helps and good luck with the project!
-cnoonan180


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