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Biorheology. 1991;28(6):557-67.

Cytoplasmic rheology of passive neutrophils.

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Biomedical Engineering and Instrumentation Program, National Center for Research Resources, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892.


The rheological properties of leukocytes are important to their effectiveness in the microcirculation. Previous studies based on in vitro data from micropipette experiments suggest that a Maxwell fluid bounded by a cortical shell with persistent tension is a realistic model for non-activated neutrophils in both the rapid and slow deformation phases. However, various viscoelastic coefficients have been obtained depending on the degree of cell deformation. In the present paper it is demonstrated that the cytoplasmic apparent viscosity and elasticity vary continuously, depending on the degree of deformation. These apparent variations are due to the inhomogeneous nature of the neutrophil internal structure. It is shown that the nucleus is much stiffer than the cytoplasm. The composite structure of the cell results in the deformation-dependent properties.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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