white blood cell

Pronunciation: (hwite blud sel)

A type of blood cell that is made in the bone marrow and found in the blood and lymph tissue. White blood cells are part of the body’s immune system. They help the body fight infection and other diseases. Types of white blood cells are granulocytes (neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils), monocytes, and lymphocytes (T cells and B cells). Checking the number of white blood cells in the blood is usually part of a complete blood cell (CBC) test. It may be used to look for conditions such as infection, inflammation, allergies, and leukemia. Also called leukocyte and WBC.

Source: NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

Caption: Blood cell development. A blood stem cell goes through several steps to become a red blood cell, platelet, or white blood cell.

Date last modified: 2014-10-28