Gone fishin'—for proteins

Using a new microscopic "fishing" technique, scientists at the Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM) and Université de Montréal have successfully snagged thousands of proteins key to the formation of the cell skeleton.

'Dual login' mechanism found to resist fungal infection in cells

Indiana University researchers have identified a mechanism involving the body's ability to resist fungal infection. The work could help advance research on cancer therapies that use the body's own immune system to fight disease.

Cells control their dance of death

La Trobe University researchers have revealed for the first time how white blood cells control the final moments of their death, helping their own removal from the human body.

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White blood cell

White blood cells (WBCs), or leukocytes (also spelled "leucocytes"), are cells of the immune system defending the body against both infectious disease and foreign materials. Five different and diverse types of leukocytes exist, but they are all produced and derived from a multipotent cell in the bone marrow known as a hematopoietic stem cell. Leukocytes are found throughout the body, including the blood and lymphatic system.

The number of leukocytes in the blood is often an indicator of disease. There are normally between 4×109 and 1.1×1010 white blood cells in a litre of blood, making up approximately 1% of blood in a healthy adult. An increase in the number of leukocytes over the upper limits is called leukocytosis, and in leukopenia, this number is much lower than the lower limit. The physical properties of leukocytes, such as volume, conductivity, and granularity, may change due to activation, the presence of immature cells, or the presence of malignant leukocytes in leukemia.

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