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white blood cell

noun
1.
any of various nearly colorless cells of the immune system that circulate mainly in the blood and lymph and participate in reactions to invading microorganisms or foreign particles, comprising the B cells, T cells, macrophages, monocytes, and granulocytes.
Also called leukocyte, white blood corpuscle, white corpuscle, white cell.
Origin
1885-1890
1885-90
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for white blood cell
  • T cells are a type of white blood cell that mediate the immune system's response to viral invaders.
  • T lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell, serve as a frontline defense against invading bacteria and viruses.
  • Myeloma is a cancer that starts in plasma cells, a type of white blood cell.
  • In those early days doctors monitoring the liquidators watched white blood cell counts drop and feared for their health.
  • His heart rate and blood pressure were elevated, and his white blood cell count was spiking.
  • Experts have known for years that high levels of benzene reduce white blood cell counts and cause leukemia in people.
  • Even then, fever and an elevated white blood cell count may be absent for days.
  • And he kept spiking fevers, even though his white blood cell count--a crude measure of infection--had started inching down.
  • Low levels of protein in the fluid plus a low white blood cell count suggest that cirrhosis is the cause of the ascites.
  • Azathioprine can also cause problems with liver function and pancreas gland inflammation, and can reduce white blood cell count.
British Dictionary definitions for white blood cell

white blood cell

noun
1.
a nontechnical name for leucocyte
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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white blood cell in Medicine

white blood cell n.
Abbr. WBC
Any of the colorless or white cells in the blood that have a nucleus and cytoplasm and help protect the body from infection and disease through specialized neutrophils, lymphocytes, and monocytes. Also called leukocyte, white corpuscle.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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white blood cell in Science
white blood cell
  (wīt)   
Any of various white or colorless cells in the blood of vertebrate animals, many of which participate in the inflammatory and immune responses to protect the body against infection and to repair injuries to tissues. White blood cells are formed mainly in the bone marrow, and unlike red blood cells, have a cell nucleus. The major types of white blood cells are granulocytes, lymphocytes, and monocytes. White blood cells are far less numerous in the blood than red blood cells, but their amount usually increases in response to infection and can be monitored as part of a clinical assessment. Also called leukocyte.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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