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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Normal Peripheral Blood Cells. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Basophil Granules and Chromatin Pattern

When examining a blood film you may find that some basophils have many dense granules, as seen in the upper image on the right, while others appear washed out with only a few granules, as shown in the lower image. This is because the granules are water soluble and tend to wash out during the rinse phase of the staining process.

The chromatin pattern of the basophil nucleus is not quite as coarse as that of the neutrophil or eosinophil nuclei. Although the nucleus is usually segmented, the lobes are often difficult to discern because they tend to crowd together and are obscured by the cytoplasmic granules.