phagocyte

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phag·o·cyte / ˈfagəˌsīt/ • n. Physiol. a type of cell within the body capable of engulfing and absorbing bacteria and other small cells and particles. DERIVATIVES: phag·o·cyt·ic / ˌfagəˈsitik/ adj.

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phagocyte A cell that is able to engulf and break down foreign particles, cell debris, and disease-producing microorganisms (see phagocytosis). Some protoctists and certain mammalian cells (e.g. macrophages and monocytes) are phagocytes. Phagocytes are important elements in the natural defence mechanism of most animals.

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phagocyte Type of leucocyte (white blood cell) able to engulf other cells, such as bacteria. Part of the body's immune system, it digests what it engulfs in the defence of the body against infection. Phagocytes also act as scavengers by clearing the bloodstream of the remains of the cells that die as part of the body's natural processes.

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phagocyte A cell (e.g. macrophages and many protozoa) that is capable of engulfing material by phagocytosis. Phagocytes are important in the defence mechanisms of many animals.

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phagocyte (fag-ŏ-syt) n. a cell that is able to engulf and digest bacteria, protozoa, cells and cell debris, and other small particles. Phagocytes include many white blood cells and macrophages, which play a major role in the body's defence mechanism.
phagocytic adj.

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phagocyte (făg´əsīt´): see blood.