Originally Answered: How are Red blood cells and white blood cells alike and different?
Erythrocytes (red blood cells):
Red blood cells are cells of the circulatory system. The main function of these cells is transportation and delivery of oxygen to the body, and recovering carbon dioxide produced as waste (to some extent). Red blood cells are rich in hemoglobin, a protein that binds to oxygen, and is responsible for the blood's red color. Red blood cells have an appearance like that of a biconcave lens.In man and all mammals, they do not have a nucleus. They are the most common type of blood cell. Human red blood cells take 20 seconds on average to complete a cycle of circulation.
Leukocytes (white blood cells):
White blood cells are cells of the immune system. Five different types of leukocytes exist, and are divided into two main categories: Granulocytes and Agranulocytes. The Granulocytes are: Eosinophils, Basophils, and Neutrophils. The Agranulocytes are Monocytes and Lymphocytes.
Remember: lymphocytes are a TYPE of leukocyte, or white blood cell, not the other way around. Leukocyte is a generic term for white blood cell. It can be easy to confuse the two words so be careful! Breaking the word leukocyte down might help you remember it better: leuko=white, cyte=cell.
The number of leukocytes in blood is often an indicator of disease.
Alright- so, now we know the definition of Red and White blood cells.
Now to answer your questions:
1) So, you ask, “what is alike between the two?”
Both are types of blood cells in the body, both are formed from stem cells in bone marrow.
2) And, “What is different between the two?”
Red blood cells are a part of the circulatory system, while white blood cells are part of the immune system; red blood cells carry oxygen while white blood cells do not; red blood cells do not have a nuclei while white blood cells do. Red blood cells are much more abundant in the body than are white blood cells.
If you want to know more about the functions of the 5 types of White blood cells, there is a great chart on Wikipedia that explains about each one and has nice pictures as well.
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