Mast cells, eosinophils, and basophils

Flashcards by sophietevans, updated more than 1 year ago


From the 23-09-13 Immunology and Disease lecture.

Resource summary

Question Answer
Where are mast cells found? Mast cells can be found in a wide variety of tissues, including the skin, connective tissues of various organs, and mucosal epithelial tissue of the respiratory, genitourinary, and digestive tracts.
When do mast cells differentiate? Their precursors, formed in the bone marrow by haematopoiesis, are released into the blood as undifferentiated cells - they do not differentiate until they leave the blood and enter the tissues.
What do mast cells have that they use in their immune responses? They have large numbers of circulating granules, like circulating basophils, which contain histamine and other pharmacologically active substances. They play an important role in the development of allergies.
What would be seen in a histological stain of an eosinophil? The eosinophil has a bilobed nucleus and a granulated cytoplasm that stains with the acid dye eosin red.
What proportion of circulating leukocytes do eosinophils constitute? 1-3% of circulating leukocytes.
How are eosinophils like neutrophils and macrophages? Like neutrophils, they are motile phagocytic cells that can migrate from the blood into the tissue spaces.
How do eosinophils differ from neutrophils in their function? Their phagocytic role is significantly less important than that of neutrophils, and it is thought that they play a role in the defence against parasitic organisms by secreting the contents of eosinophilic granules, which may damage the parasite membrane.
How would a basophil appear histologically? These have lobed nuclei and a heavily granulated cytoplasm that stains with the basic dye methylene blue.
What proportion of circulating leukocytes do basophils constitute? They constitute <1% of circulating leukocytes.
How do basophils function? Basophils are not phagocytic. They function by releasing pharmacologically active substances from their cytoplasmic granules and play a major role in certain allergic responses, along with mast cells.
Here is a picture of a basophil. basophil.png (image/png)
Here is a picture of an eosinophil. eosinophil.png (image/png)
Here is a picture of a mast cell. mastcell.png (image/png)
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