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Pale fluid that bathes tissues, maintaining fluid balance and removing bacteria. It enters the blood system at a vein under the collarbone that it reaches via channels and ducts, being driven through them mainly by surrounding muscle activity. The lymphatic organs (spleen and thymus) and lymph nodes filter out bacteria and other particles the lymph takes up from body tissues. Lymph contains lymphocytes and macrophages, the primary cells of the immune system. See alsolymphatic system.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on lymph, visit Britannica.com.