- A type of white blood cell, specifically a form of granulocyte, filled with neutrally-staining granules, tiny sacs of enzymes that help the cell to kill and digest microorganisms it has engulfed by phagocytosis. The mature neutrophil has a segmented nucleus (it is called a seg or poly) while the immature neutrophil has band-shape nucleus (it is called a band). The neutrophil has a lifespan of about 3 days. Neutrophilia, an increased proportion of neutrophils in the blood, is a common finding with acute bacterial infections. Neutropenia, a decreased proportion of neutrophils, may be seen with viral infections and after radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Neutropenia lowers the immunologic barrier to bacterial and fungal infection.
* * *neu·tro·phil 'n(y)ü-trə-.fil or neu·tro·phil·ic .n(y)ü-trə-'fil-ik also neu·tro·phile 'n(y)ü-trə-.fīl adj staining to the same degree with acid or basic dyes <\neutrophil granulocytes>neutrophil also neutrophile n a granulocyte that is the chief phagocytic white blood cell
* * *n.a variety of granulocyte (a type of white blood cell) distinguished by a lobed nucleus and the presence in its cytoplasm of fine granules that stain purple with Romanowsky stains. It is capable of ingesting and killing bacteria and provides an important defence against infection. There are normally 2.0-7.5 x 109 neutrophils per litre of blood.
* * *neu·tro·phil (nooґtro-fil) [neutro- + -phil] 1. a mature granular leukocyte that is polymorphonuclear (its nucleus having three to five lobes connected by slender threads of chromatin, and cytoplasm containing fine granules); neutrophils have the properties of chemotaxis, adherence to immune complexes, and phagocytosis. The counterpart in nonhuman mammals is the heterophil. Called also neutrocyte and neutrophilic leukocyte. 2. any cell, structure, or histologic element readily 1. stainable by neutral dyes.
Medical dictionary. 2011.