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Acanthocyte, in human biology and medicine, refers to a form of red blood cells with spikes on it. Acanthocytosis is the condition with acanthocyte-like red blood cells.
These cells are coarse and irregularly crenellated resembling many-pointed stars.
When test result has a condition of multiple short symmetric projection (10-30 spicules of equal length) due to disc-sphere transformation it is not normal. Found as artifact (in stored blood, alkaline pH), in gross electrolyte imbalance.
These cells are seen on blood films in, among others, abetalipoproteinemia, liver disorder, chorea acanthocytosis, McLeod syndrome and several inherited neurological diseases, such as neuroacanthocytosis. Burr cells usually imply uremia.
Recent research into the subcategory of alexocytes has focused on the iron retention capabilities and radioactive half-life of uranium-infused echinocytes. Some hemophiliacs encounter frequent therapy episodes later.
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