Phagocytes are immune cells such as macrophages and neutrophils that can engulf large particles, including bacteria or dead cells, and destroy these particles internally. They are important for clearing infections and damaged cells from the body’s tissues.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News & Views |

    Immune cells can promote the thermogenic phenotype of white adipocytes during cold exposure, in a process known as ‘browning’ or ‘beiging’. Wang et al. now reveal a potential mechanism whereby alternatively activated macrophages prompt adipose sympathetic nerve fibres to release norepinephrine and promote adipocyte beiging.

    • Michael P. Czech
    Nature Metabolism 3, 1441-1442
  • News & Views |

    The retention of erythroid mitochondria, a feature associated with impairments in the ubiquitin–proteasome system, is detected in a subset of pediatric patients with lupus and is associated with the type I interferon pathway.

    • Mariana J. Kaplan
    Nature Immunology 22, 1354-1355
  • News & Views |

    Dysfunctional efferocytosis impairs clearance of apoptotic cells in disease. A new study shows that glutamine catabolism supports efficient apoptotic cell efferocytosis via non-canonical glutamine transamination but not canonical GLUD1-dependent α-ketoglutarate production, in a process that may operate in human atherosclerosis.

    • Alison Jaccard
    • , Xiaoyun Li
    •  & Ping-Chih Ho
    Nature Metabolism 3, 1280-1281
  • News & Views |

    Guanylate-binding proteins (GBPs) promote immune defenses against infectious agents. Two studies reveal that GBP1 directly binds to cytosolic lipopolysaccharide (LPS), bringing caspase-4 to the surface of bacteria to induce pyroptosis.

    • Shouya Feng
    •  & Si Ming Man
    Nature Immunology 21, 829-830