ROBERT BECKER / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROBERT BECKER / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a sample of blood from a patient with acute myeloblastic leukaemia (AML). Here, a number of leukaemic white blood cells (coloured blue) are seen with ridge-like projections. Leukaemia is a malignant disease in which bone marrow and other blood-forming organs overproduce certain types of white blood cells (myeloblast cells in this case). Whereas normal white blood cells play a protective immune-response role, leukaemic white blood cells are immature and abnormal; they suppress normal white blood cell production and lower the body's resistance to other infections.
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