The biconcave shape of the cell allows oxygen exchange at a constant rate over the largest possible area.erythroblast (normoblast); during two to five days of development, the erythroblast gradually fills with hemoglobin, and its nucleus and mitochondria (particles in the cytoplasm that provide energy for the cell) disappear.
In a late stage the cell is called a reticulocyte, which ultimately becomes a fully mature red cell.
The colour comes from a chemical known as haem, which contains iron.
It’s the iron that is the crucial ingredient for carrying oxygen.
We may share your information with third-party partners for marketing purposes.In invertebrates, oxygen-carrying pigment is carried free in the plasma; its concentration in red cells in vertebrates, so that oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged as gases, is more efficient and represents an important evolutionary development.The mammalian red cell is further adapted by lacking a nucleus—the amount of oxygen required by the cell for its own metabolism is thus very low, and most oxygen carried can be freed into the tissues.Australian governments fund the Australian Red Cross Blood Service for the provision of blood, blood products and services to the Australian community.This week we’re running a series in collaboration with the Australian Red Cross Blood Service looking at blood: what it actually does, why we need it, and what happens when something goes wrong with the fluid that gives us life. Just as a village can’t grow into a city without some form of transport (road, rail or river) that provides necessary interconnections for it to flourish, living things are limited in the size they can reach unless they have some form of circulatory system to transport nutrients and remove waste.Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.Join Britannica's Publishing Partner Program and our community of experts to gain a global audience for your work!The cell is flexible and assumes a bell shape as it passes through extremely small blood vessels.It is covered with a membrane composed of lipids and proteins, lacks a nucleus, and contains The function of the red cell and its hemoglobin is to carry oxygen from the lungs or gills to all the body tissues and to carry carbon dioxide, a waste product of metabolism, to the lungs, where it is excreted.A truly special case is the Antarctic icefish, which lost its haemoglobin long ago as a result of a presumably random mutation.It has adapted though, and now survives by transporting oxygen that is simply dissolved in its blood.