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pleiades's avatar

Pus contains dead white blood cells?

Asked by pleiades (6453 points ) April 22nd, 2014

Why have they died and why do they form the pus?

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6 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Here’s the official version. Never having studied biology, don’t ask me what it means, but it seems like a pretty efficient mechanism. Thank you, mother nature.

“Pus consists of a thin, protein-rich fluid, known as liquor puris, and dead leukocytes from the body’s immune response (mostly neutrophils). During infection, macrophages release cytokines which trigger neutrophils to seek the site of infection by chemotaxis.

There, the neutrophils engulf and destroy the bacteria and the bacteria resist the immune response by releasing toxins called leukocidins. As the neutrophils die off from toxins and old age, they are destroyed by macrophages, forming the viscous pus.” Source.

Dan_Lyons's avatar

They have done their job. They have destroyed or engulfed an infection or other bacterial agent and now need to rid our body of the toxins.
Ever notice when you squeeze the pus out that often the sore disappears, never to return?

Yetanotheruser's avatar

“Leukocytes”=“White Blood Cells”.

Quakwatch's avatar

It is a privilege and necessity of multicellularity to sacrifice parts in order to save the whole.

Smitha's avatar

Yes, Pus usually contains white blood cells, dead tissue and germs.
Pus is the build up of dead leukocytes (white blood cells) from the body’s immune system in response to infection. It accumulates at the site of inflammation. Inflammation occurs when tissues are injured by bacteria, harmful toxins, heat etc.These damaged cells release chemicals which attract white blood cells called phagocytes. The phagocytes “eat” germs and dead or damaged cells and eventually die. Pus is formed from a collection of dead tissue, dead bacteria, and live and dead phagocytes.

Coloma's avatar

This Q. has very effectively just destroyed my enjoyment of a bowl of tapioca pudding.

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