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Macrophage facts for kids

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Phagocytosis ZP
Steps of a macrophage ingesting a pathogen:
a. Ingestion through phagocytosis, a phagosome is formed
b. The fusion of lysosomes with the phagosome; the pathogen is broken down by enzymes
c. Waste material is expelled or assimilated (the latter not pictured)
1. Pathogens
2. Phagosome
3. Lysosomes
4. Waste material
5. Cytoplasm
6. Cell membrane

Macrophages are white blood cells within tissues.

Monocytes and macrophages are phagocytes, white blood cells that protect the body by eating (phagocytosing) dirt, bacteria and dead or dying cells. They are important for fighting infections and helping general immunity.

Life cycle

When a monocyte enters damaged tissue through the wall of a blood vessel it changes to become a macrophage. Monocytes are attracted to a damaged site by chemical substances.

Unlike short-lived neutrophils, macrophages survive longer in the body, up to several months.


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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Macrófago para niños

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