Friday, January 27, 2006

Mnemonic Follies: Blood Cells

Neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils are granulocytes; monocytes and leukocytes are agranulocytes. So, Phil looks grainy. Use any visual involving someone named Phil, and imagine a grainy photo. (Warning: multi-channel learners may associate visuals of musicians with that person's music, and bad music may lodge in your brain. Most Elvis Costello tunes will drive out "Sussudio.")

Neutrophils neutralize infections, usually bacterial ones.

Basophils release histamine and heparin; they pump out the bass of immune response.

Eosinophils (EE-oh-sin-uh-filz) fight parasites. Parasites; ewwwww!

Monocytes are single-minded killing machines.

Leukocytes come in T and B varieties; TB is a nasty bug itself; being given a grim diagnosis is as shocking and sucky as hearing, "Luke, I am your father."

Yes, that's Phil Collins and Empire Strikes Back. Yes, 'non-traditional student' does mean 'older.' Shut up.

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