Understand Difference

Myeloblasts and Lymphoblasts: The Foundation of Immunity

Introduction to

Myeloblasts and


Our blood is made up of various types of cells that help our body function properly. There are two types of cells that are responsible for the production of blood cells.

One is the myeloblast, which is responsible for producing granulocytes or the white blood cells responsible for innate immunity. The other is the lymphoblast, which produces lymphocytes or white blood cells responsible for adaptive immunity.

In this article, we will take a closer look at both myeloblasts and lymphoblasts, their characteristics, and abnormalities.


Myeloblasts are nucleated cells that are part of the granulopoiesis process. They are responsible for producing eosinophils, basophils, and neutrophils that are responsible for our body’s innate immunity.

These cells are produced in the bone marrow and undergo several different stages before they become mature granulocytes. Characteristics of


Myeloblasts are immature cells that can divide and differentiate into more specialized cells. These cells are the precursors to promyelocytes, which then differentiate into myelocytes and then metamyelocytes before forming mature granulocytes.

Myeloblasts have deeply basophilic cytoplasm and uncondensed chromatin in the nucleus. These characteristics make them difficult to stain and diagnose.

Special staining procedures are required to distinguish these cells from other similar cells.

Myeloblasts also have primary granules that are not present in more mature granulocytes. These granules contain enzymes and proteins that are involved in both the antimicrobial process and inflammation.

Abnormalities of


Myeloblasts can become abnormal and multiply in a cancerous process called acute myeloblastic leukemia. In this process, the bone marrow is overcrowded with abnormal cells that fail to produce healthy blood cells.

This abnormal proliferation can lead to anemia and ultimately hematopoietic failure.


Lymphoblasts are nucleated cells that are part of the lymphoid lineage and are responsible for the production of lymphocytes, which are key players in adaptive immunity.

Lymphoblasts are present in the bone marrow and the thymus gland. Characteristics of


Lymphoblasts have a large nucleus-to-cytoplasm ratio and are slightly larger than myeloblasts. These cells have round nuclei and scanty, basophilic cytoplasm.

Lymphoblasts also have a homogeneous nuclear chromatin pattern and prominent nucleoli.

Lymphoblasts undergo various developmental stages to become mature lymphocytes. The stages include the pro-B cell, pre-B cell, immature B cell, and mature B cell, which produces antibodies that help fight infections.

Abnormalities of


Lymphoblasts can also multiply abnormally in a cancerous process called acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). In this process, the bone marrow is overcrowded with abnormal lymphoblasts, which can prevent the production of healthy blood cells.

This leads to various abnormalities such as anemia, reduced immunity, and an increased risk of infection.


Myeloblasts and lymphoblasts play an essential role in the production of various blood cells that are important for our body’s proper functioning. Understanding their characteristics and abnormalities can help in the diagnosis and treatment of related diseases such as leukemia.

Overall, the myeloblasts and lymphoblasts are intriguing cells that serve as a foundation for our body’s immune system.


Lymphoblasts are another type of blood cell that plays a critical role in the immune system. Unlike myeloblasts, which produce granulocytes in the bone marrow, lymphoblasts mature into lymphocytes, which are agranulocytes that are responsible for adaptive immunity.

Lymphocytes are mainly produced in the bone marrow and then migrate to the secondary immune organs like the thymus, spleen, and lymph nodes. Characteristics of


Lymphopoiesis is the process of lymphocyte formation, and the lymphoblast is the precursor cell of lymphocytes. These cells have a large nucleus-to-cytoplasm ratio, resembling the typical morphology of a non-mature cell.

The nucleus is large and round with a nucleolus, while the peripheral cytoplasm is small. A peripheral smear of blood under a light microscope may aid in the recognition of lymphoblasts.

Lymphoblasts differentiate into two primary types of lymphocytes that work together to provide the immune system’s adaptive response. T lymphocytes are originated in the thymus, while B lymphocytes are originated in the bone marrow.

Hematogones, which are non-B progenitor cells, are also present in bone marrow and bear a resemblance to the lymphoblasts.

Lymphoblasts development and differentiation into specialized cells are induced by various cytokines and growth factors such as interleukins and interferon gamma. The adaptive immunity provided by the lymphoblasts is antigen-dependent immunity.

They recognize foreign objects or antigens from pathogens, environmental toxins, and cancer cells through the antigen receptor expressed on their surfaces. The immune response is triggered, and cell differentiation results in the appropriate immune cell population expansion.

Finally, after the immune response and pathogen elimination, there is a return to homeostasis.

Abnormalities of lymphoblasts

Lymphoblasts proliferation out of control can cause cancer. Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) is a disorder affecting the blood-cell-forming cells in the bone marrow and other parts of the body.

Over time the disease leads to abnormal lymphoblasts accumulating, which suppress the immune system’s proper function. The abnormal proliferation of lymphoblasts is one reason immunocompromised individuals are vulnerable to secondary infection.

Malfunctioning immune cells can result in an inappropriate or absent immune response. Similarities between

Myeloblasts and


Hematopoietic stem cells differentiate into myeloblasts and lymphoblasts, and both are precursors of the specialized cells involved in the immune system’s function. In bone marrow, both are nucleated cells that are difficult to distinguish from other similar cells without proper staining.

Both types of blood cells are important in fighting infection and immunodeficiency leads to a lack of defense. The malfunction of these precursor cells leads to cancer, anemia, and other blood-related disorders.

The two types share the essential characteristics of nucleated cells, including a granular, immature appearance. Microscopy is required to identify the anomalies arising in either a lymphoblast or myeloblast lineage.


Myeloblasts and lymphoblasts are both integral to the body’s immune system, producing specialized cells that play an essential role in our defense against various infections and diseases. Despite their differences, they are united in the fight against cancer and other blood-related disorders.

Anyone with an understanding of their role in the immune system and their abnormalities stands to benefit if they themselves develop blood-related problems or if they are caring for those who have. Differences Between

Myeloblasts and


Myeloblasts and lymphoblasts have several differences, ranging from their developmental process, the type of cells they produce, the presence of granules in their cytoplasm, and the type of leukemia they can cause.

Development Process

Myeloblasts develop through the process of granulopoiesis, which involves the production of granulocytes, including eosinophils, basophils, and neutrophils. These cells are part of the innate immune system.

They quickly attack foreign invaders and pathogens and are involved in inflammatory responses. Their maturation process takes place in the bone marrow.

In contrast, lymphoblasts differentiate and mature into the lymphocytes that make up the adaptive immune system. Lymphocytes are involved in the recognition of specific pathogens, toxins, and cancer cells.

They are divided into two categories, T lymphocytes or T cells, and B lymphocytes or B cells. T cells mature in the thymus gland, hence the name T cells.

They make up about 80% of lymphocytes in the blood and have several subtypes involved in direct killing of pathogens, secreting cytokines, and expressing regulatory activity on other immune cells. B cells, however, mature in the bone marrow.

Their antigen receptors recognize pathogens and other harmful invaders and generate a pathogen-specific response. B cells produce a range of antibodies that can attack specific antigens, and do not require presenting antigens to other cells like T cells.

Type of Cells Produced

Myeloblasts specialize in the production of granulocytes, which are white blood cells that are granulated. These granulocytes include eosinophils, neutrophils, and basophils.

These cells contain cytoplasmic granules in various stages of maturation, which give them different staining characteristics under a microscope.

Lymphoblasts, on the other hand, do not produce granulocytes. Instead, they differentiate into agranulocytes, namely T cells, B cells, and natural killer cells.

These cells are non-granulated, and they do not have the distinguishing large granules found in mature granulocytes.


Myeloblasts have granules in their cytoplasm, which are distinctive in staining properties and indicate the cells’ differentiation towards the granulocyte lineage. The granules contain enzyme and proteins that are used to destroy pathogens during the innate immune response.

These granules make these cells appear striped when viewed under the microscope. In contrast, lymphoblasts have a more consistent-looking cytoplasm with few to no visible granules.

This is part of the morphological features that distinguish lymphoblasts from other non-lymphoid cells in the bone marrow.

Type of Leukemia

Acute myeloblastic leukemia results from abnormal proliferation and accumulation of abnormal cells in bone marrow, which interfere with the production of healthy blood cells. These abnormal cells are myeloid in origin and can be diagnosed via the detection of myeloblasts under the microscope.

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia, meanwhile, arises from abnormal proliferation and accumulation of abnormal cells in bone marrow, which interfere with healthy blood cell production. These abnormal cells are lymphoid in origin, and they can be diagnosed by the detection of immature lymphoid cells, termed lymphoblasts.


In summary, myeloblasts and lymphoblasts are two distinct cell types differentiated from hematopoietic stem cells in the bone marrow. These cells then continue through specific differentiation processes that lead to the development of various white blood cells.

Myeloblasts differentiate into granulocytes, which are important in the body’s innate immune response.

Lymphoblasts, meanwhile, differentiate into lymphocytes, which generate specific immune responses to protect against pathogens. They differentiate into T, B, and NK cells, crucial for adaptive immunity to build up an immunity reserve.

Abnormal proliferation of myeloblasts can lead to acute myeloblastic leukemia, while abnormal proliferation of lymphoblasts can lead to acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The distinction between these two types of cells and their resulting leukemias may be of significant importance in diagnosis and treatment of blood-related disorders.

In conclusion, understanding the differences between myeloblasts and lymphoblasts is essential for comprehending the intricate workings of our immune system.

Myeloblasts develop into granulocytes, whereas lymphoblasts differentiate into agranulocytes, specifically T cells, B cells, and natural killer cells.

The presence or absence of granules in their cytoplasm distinguishes these cells, with myeloblasts being granulated and lymphoblasts being non-granulated. Furthermore, each cell type has its own associated type of leukemia, emphasizing the significance of recognizing these abnormalities.

By grasping these distinctions, healthcare professionals can make accurate diagnoses and develop targeted treatments. Amplifying our understanding of myeloblasts and lymphoblasts showcases the intricate balance required for a healthy immune response and underscores the complex interplay between different types of blood cells.

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