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10.2: Lymphocytes

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    Notes: Can be characterized as being small or large depending on the amount of cytoplasm. Small lymphocytes are more uniform in appearance whereas large lymphocytes have a variable appearance.1

    Nucleus-to-Cytoplasm Ratio: 5:1 to 2:1 1,2

    Nucleoli: May be visible 1,2

    Nucleus:1,2

    Round, oval, or indented

    Dark purple, dense chromatin (heterochromatin)

    Cytoplasm:1,2

    Pale blue

    Scant to moderate

    Vacuoles may be present

    Granules:1,2

    Large: Azurophilic granules may be present

    Small: typically lack granules (agranular)

    Normal % in Bone Marrow: 5-15% 2

    Normal % in Peripheral Blood: 20-40% 2


    Lymphocyte Lineage

    Lymphocytes can be characterized into two cell types depending on the site of cell maturation:

    1. B Cells

    Lymphocytes that mature in the bone marrow. These cells are lymphocytes that are able to mature into plasma cells and take part in antibody production.1

    Specific surface markers:1,3

    CD10, CD19, CD20, D21, CD22, D24, CD38

    2. T Cells

    Lymphocytes that mature in the thymus and lymphoid tissues. When these cells become activated, they are able to take part in cell-mediated immunity.1

    Specific surface markers:1,3

    CD2, CD3, CD4, CD5, CD7, CD8, CD25


    References:

    1. Williams L, Finnegan K. Lymphocytes. In: Clinical laboratory hematology. 3rd ed. New Jersey: Pearson; 2015. p. 122-43.

    2. Rodak BF, Carr JH. Lymphocyte maturation. In: Clinical hematology atlas. 5th ed. St. Louis, Missouri: Elsevier Inc.; 2017. p. 79-88.

    3. Czader M. Flow cytometric analysis in hematologic disorders. In: Rodak’s hematology clinical applications and principles. 5th ed. St. Louis, Missouri: Saunders; 2015. p. 543-60.


    This page titled 10.2: Lymphocytes is shared under a CC BY-NC 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Valentin Villatoro and Michelle To (Open Education Alberta) via source content that was edited to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.