Three Types of Granule Formed in Guinea Pig and Rat Heterophil Granulocytes

  • P. Brederoo
  • J. van der Meulen
  • Charles E. McCall
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 141)


It is generally accepted that in heterophil (in man neutrophil) granulocytes, two types of granule are formed successively during the development of these cells in the bone marrow. The process of formation and maturation of these two types of granule was well documented by Bainton and Farquhar (1966) in their studies on the development of heterophil granulocytes in the bone marrow of the rabbit. From these studies it became clear that during the promyelocyte stage azurophil granules are formed, whereas during the myelocyte stage and shortly thereafter, specific granules are produced. Both types of granule originate from vesicles pinching off from Golgi cisternae and changing into mature granules by condensation of their contents. Mature azurophil granules are characterized by a homogeneous matrix of higher electron density than that of specific granules. In the mature heterophil granulocytes furthermore, azurophil granules are considerably outnumbered by specific granules.


Azurophil Granule Specific Granule Golgi Cisterna Mature Granule Immature Granule 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Bainton, D.F., and Farquhar, M.G., 1966, Origin of granules in polymorphonuclear leukocytes. Two types derived from opposite faces of the Golgi complex in developing granulocytes, J. Cell Biol. 28: 277.Google Scholar
  2. Bainton, D.F., and Farquhar, M.G., 1968, Differences in enzyme content of azurophil and specific granules of polymorphonuclear leukocytes. II. Cytochemistry and electron microscopy of bone marrow cells, J. Cell Biol. 39: 299.Google Scholar
  3. Bainton, D.F., Ullyot, J.L., and Farquhar, M.G., 1971, The development of neutrophilic polymorphonuclear leukocytes in human bone marrow, J. Exp. Med. 134: 907.Google Scholar
  4. Brederoo, P., and Daems, W.Th., 1977, A new type of primary granule in guinea pig heterophil granulocytes, Cell Biol. Int. Rep. 1: 363.Google Scholar
  5. Brederoo, P., and Daems, W.Th., 1978, The ultrastructure of guinea pig heterophil granulocytes and the heterogeneity of the granules. I. The development in the bone marrow, Cell Tiss. Res. 194: 183.Google Scholar
  6. Brederoo, P., and van der Meulen, J., 1980, Granule formation in rat heterophil promyelocytes, in: “Electron Microscopy 1980”. Procs. 7th European Congress on Electron Microscopy, volume 2Google Scholar
  7. P. Brederoo and W. de Priester, eds. The Seventh European Congress on Electron Microscopy Foundation, Leiden.Google Scholar
  8. Breton-Gorius, J., and Reyes, F., 1976, Ultrastructure of human bone marrow cell maturation, Int. Rev. Cytol. 46:251. Daems, W.Th., 1968, On the fine structure of human neutrophilic leukocyte granules, J. Ultrastruct. Res. 24: 343.Google Scholar
  9. Farquhar, M.G. and Bainton, D.F., 1972, Cytochemical studies on leukocyte granules, in: Histochemistry and cytochemistry 1972. Proc. 4th Internat. Congress, T. Takeuchi, K. Ogawa, S. Fujita, eds, Japan Society of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry, Kyoto.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. Brederoo
    • 1
  • J. van der Meulen
    • 1
  • Charles E. McCall
  1. 1.Laboratory for Electron MicroscopyUniversity of LeidenLeidenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations