White Blood Cells (WBC)│Detect, Destroy, Retain, Repeat

wbcYour body, your kingdom; protected and maintained by an army of warriors working around the clock to keep you healthy. They fight “nucleus and cytoplasm” against foreign body invaders and sacrifice their lives for your well-being; moreover, they clean after themselves. Your immune system is an innately trained military-like unit that operates under different divisions: Reconnaissance, signal, combat, combat support…; Each division has its predetermined role in preventing, killing or assisting in the elimination of intruders trying to invade your body through microbial, bacterial, viral, and parasitic infections. Your white blood cells play a preventive role by creating a barrier against viruses and bacteria; However, if the virus does get to the body, they detect and eliminate it before it makes itself home and reproduce, and if it was able to reproduce, your white blood cells lead a battle to destroy it. Nevertheless, your immune system is considered an adaptive mechanism that evolves with time; when exposed to a virus, it can remember characteristics of this virus and develops the best way to attack it; this ability to learn, adapt and remember, is what makes your “acquired” immunity.

The following scenario illustrates how the immune system makes use of white blood cells when presented with an outside threat. When you cut your hand, the skin breaks, microscopic cells, along with other bacteria or parasites residing on the cutting utencil, rush into the body. Basophils, that patrol the blood for intruders, are directly alerted and send signals to white blood cells by releasing  histamine that causes inflammation to increase blood flow to the injured area, and attract neutrophils and eosinophils. Neutrophils proceed to attack and ingest the foreign cells while eosinophils attach to and intoxicate the larger bacteria and parasites to prevent infection.

So, if you EVER felt like losing a battle, take a minute to read this table and appreciate all the battles your body is fighting for you EVERY SINGLE DAY.


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