white blood cell


Definition of white blood cell 

: any of the blood cells that are colorless, lack hemoglobin, contain a nucleus, and include the lymphocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils

called also leukocyte, white blood corpuscle, white cell

— compare red blood cell

Examples of white blood cell in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In July 2017, Russell, who also served in Vietnam, was diagnosed with follicular lymphoma, a type of cancer that affects white blood cells, which helps the body fight infections. Evan Frank, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "As he fought cancer, Oconomowoc swim coach led his team to a national championship," 3 July 2018 With non-Hodgkins's lymphoma, the cancer starts with white blood cells called lymphocytes, which are part of the body's immune system, according to the American Cancer Society. Sara M Moniuszko, USA TODAY, "Abby Lee Miller, former 'Dance Moms' star, preliminarily diagnosed with Burkitt Lymphoma," 19 Apr. 2018 Doctors said that when the boys first arrived, one had a heartbeat that was too slow and some other had low counts of white blood cells, though those issues have since been resolved. Rebecca Tan, Washington Post, "New video from Thai navy shows the scene inside Tham Luang cave during dramatic rescue," 11 July 2018 The tabletop device is also capable of doing instant blood analyses like white blood cell counts and hemoglobin measurements, which could mean blood samples don’t need to be sent away to a lab. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian, "A Robot May One Day Draw Your Blood," 13 July 2018 Hodgkin's lymphoma is a cancer that develops from cells in the lymphatic system called lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell that helps the body fight infections. Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle, "Texans' Andre Hal on lymphoma diagnosis: 'I know how to beat it'," 30 June 2018 To her horror, Smith was diagnosed a cancer of the lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell that fights infection in the body. Fox News, "Woman diagnosed with 2 terminal illnesses given 6 months to live," 2 May 2018 But an allergy will emerge later if, at this step, certain white blood cells target a peanut protein, identifying it as foreign. Amber Dance, Washington Post, "Peanut allergy is one of the most severe food allergies. New therapies might help.," 12 May 2018 The white blood cells in the semen, known to be transmitters for HIV, were dyed fluorescent green. Zoë Schlanger, Newsweek, "Plantibodies Could Pave the Road to Wellness," 15 Dec. 2014

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'white blood cell.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of white blood cell

1852, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

15 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for white blood cell

The first known use of white blood cell was in 1852

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More Definitions for white blood cell

white blood cell


English Language Learners Definition of white blood cell

: a clear or colorless cell in the blood that protects the body from disease

white blood cell


Kids Definition of white blood cell

: one of the tiny colorless cells of the blood that help fight infection

white blood cell


Medical Definition of white blood cell 

: any of the blood cells of the immune system that are colorless, lack hemoglobin, contain a nucleus, and include the lymphocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils along with their precursors and derivatives (as macrophages) : leukocyte abbreviation WBC

called also white blood corpuscle, white cell, white corpuscle

— compare red blood cell

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