Blood cell discovery may lead to new treatments for chronic inflammatory conditions

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Neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, fight infection, clear away cell debris, and heal injured tissue.  In diseases with chronic or excessive inflammation (e.g., arthritis, sepsis), however, they can also cause tissue damage. Scientists at the University of Illinois, Chicago, recently identified two distinct subtypes of neutrophils, and designed a way to preserve the neutrophils’ favorable effects while their anti-inflammatory properties fight disease.