16 August 2008

Medical concepts made easy: #1

According to Dr. R, it is very important that we understand the concept of diapedesis; a phenomenon observed in the inflammatory response. So important, in fact, that he acted out the apparent struggle of a neutrophil trying to squeeze through an endothelial cell to attack a microbe (played by an M2). Popping across the stage in apparent success he yelled "I have diapedesed!" Later that night I felt the very same struggle when trying to cross a packed dance floor to get a glass of water. I couldn't help it, when we finally made it to the edge of the crowd, I turned to my roommate and said "I have diapedesed!"

Scientific definition: White blood cells migrating across the endothelium due to injury or trauma.
Real world analog: Crossing a packed dance floor due to thirst or heat.

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