Immature White blood cells identification

immature White blood cells identification - white blood cells

You know, Immature white blood cell identification is a very difficult task in the Hematology section in the laboratory. The maturation process is called granulopoiesis. The maturation sequence in granulopoiesis is myeloblast, promyelocyte, myelocyte, metamyelocyte, and band cell. This process occurs in the bone marrow. Each and every immature white blood cells have specific identification features. Immature WBCs are not present in the peripheral blood.

There are 5 types of immature white blood cells. Those are,

  • Myeloblast
  • Promyelocyte
  • Myelocyte
  • Metamyelocyte
  • Band cell

5 types of immature white blood cells can be compared using those characteristics. Those are,

  • Nucleoli present or not
  • size of the cell
  • Nuclear size and shape
  • Chromatin
  • Amount of cytoplasm and granules(Primary or secondary)


myeloblast - immature white blood cell identification
  • One or more nucleoli
  • 15-20 micrometer(Cell size)
  • Large round to oval nucleus
  • Nuclear chromatin is fine and reticular
  • Blue cytoplasm
  • few or no granules


promyelocyte -  immature white blood cell identification
  • Nucleoli present
  • slightly larger in size than myeloblast
  • large, round or oval and is often centrally placed but may sometimes be located ecentrically
  • Nuclear chromatin shows slight condensation
  • Primary or Azurophilic granules appear(Basophilic cytoplasm)


  • Absent of nucleoli
  • Round or oval in shape and may vary in size
  • Round to oval eccentrically placed nucleus
  • More condensation of chromatin than in promyelocyte stage
  • Few Azurophilic granules present small pink specific granules in the cytoplasm


metamyelocyte - immature white blood cell identification
  • Absent of nucleoli
  • Similar in shape to myelocytes but are slightly smaller
  • Nucleus becomes indented and kidney shaped
  • Nuclear chromatin become moderately coarse
  • Primary and Secondary granules present in cytoplasm

Band cell

band cell
  • Absent of nucleoli
  • A band like the shape of the nucleus
  • Condensed nuclear chromatin
  • the cytoplasm is abundant and pale pink or colorless



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