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noun, plural: echinocytes

A red blood cell with multiple, small, knoblike projections evenly distributed on the entire surface of the cell.


Echinocytes occur due to metabolic disorders such as renal disease. They may also form when they are exposed to a hypertonic medium by which they become wrinkled or crenated, such as in vitro artifact during slide preparation.

Word origin: From Latin echīnus (sea urchin) + -cyte (cell).