© 2020

Molecular and Cellular Biology of Phagocytosis

  • Maurice B. Hallett

Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1246)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Maurice B. Hallett
    Pages 1-7
  3. Maurice B. Hallett
    Pages 9-42
  4. Michelle E. Maxson, Sergio Grinstein
    Pages 43-54
  5. Jana Prassler, Florian Simon, Mary Ecke, Stephan Gruber, Günther Gerisch
    Pages 71-81
  6. Rhiannon E. Roberts, Sharon Dewitt, Maurice B. Hallett
    Pages 83-102
  7. Paula Nunes-Hasler, Mayis Kaba, Nicolas Demaurex
    Pages 103-128
  8. Sharon Dewitt, Maurice B. Hallett
    Pages 129-151
  9. Hana Valenta, Marie Erard, Sophie Dupré-Crochet, Oliver Nüβe
    Pages 153-177
  10. Maurice B. Hallett
    Pages 179-182
  11. Back Matter
    Pages 183-189

About this book


Phagocytosis is the engulfment of particulate matter by cells. It is a fundamental (and probably “primitive”) cell biological process which is important in single celled organisms such as amoeba; multicellular animals including coelenterates; and in higher animals. In humans and other mammals, specialised immune cells (phagocytes) utilise phagocytosis in their crucial role of engulfing and destroying infecting microbes. Yet, surprisingly, the biophysics and biochemistry underlying the process has only become clear recently with the advent of genetic manipulation and advances in single cell imaging. In this volume, the aim is to bring together recent fundamental advances that give a clear picture of the underlying mechanism involved in phagocytosis. Not only is this an important topic in its own right, but a full understanding of the process will have a potential impact on human medicine, since as antibiotics become less effective in fight infection, researchers are looking at alternative approaches, including enhancing the “natural” immunity brought about by immune  phagocytes.

The aim is to provide a comprehensive volume on the topic, with separate chapters on identified recent advances, each written by the major contributors in each area. In addition, the volume will attempt to give a wider overview than is often the case in single author reviews, with an emphasis here on the cell biological understanding of phagocytosis using biophysical approaches alongside the biochemical and imaging approaches.


neutrophils amoeba macrophages membrane tension Immunology Cell Biology

Editors and affiliations

  • Maurice B. Hallett
    • 1
  1. 1.School of MedicineCardiff UniversityCardiffUK

About the editors

Maurice B. Hallett, Ph.D., FRMS is Professor of Experimental Cell Biology and Director of Postgraduate Research Studies at Cardiff University School of Medicine, UK.
After obtaining degrees in Pharmacology from University College London, Maurice joined the Medical School in Cardiff, UK to establish a research group that is focused on the mechanisms which underlie the behaviour of human blood phagocytes, especially neutrophils. The work of this group is aimed at establishing novel therapeutic approaches to the treatment of inflammatory diseases by gaining insights into the mechanisms by which phagocytes capture and kill infecting microbes. This group, funded by the Medical Research Council (UK), the Wellcome Trust, the British Heart Foundation and other organizations, has established a number of novel ways of studying the behaviour of human phagocytes at the level of individual cells. These have involved the development of new micro-manipulation and sub-cellular imaging techniques.
Maurice has published over 150 full research papers in cell biological and immunological journals, authored many invited book chapters, has written two books on neutrophil cell biology and holds patents for inventions relating to cell engineering.

He also has an interest in the emergence of unpredictability in small systems and the ways in which this is overcome in living cells as he discussed in Is Life based on Clockwork Biology or the uncertainty of quantum physics? in Perspectives in Biology and Medicine. Details of all recent publications and patents can be found on the Neutrophil Signalling Group web site.
He is a member of the Institute of Biology (UK) and the Biochemical Society (UK), he is a fellow of the Royal Microscopical Society, and serves on their Cell Biology Committee.

Bibliographic information

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