Blood Health

Nucleated red blood cell (NRBC)

Optimal Result: 0 - 0.0001 / 100 WBCs.

The term 'NRBC' – 'nucleated red blood cells' – refers to precursor cells of the red blood cell lineage which still contain a nucleus; they are also known as erythroblasts or – obsolete – normoblasts. In healthy adults and older children, NRBC can only be found in blood-building bone marrow where they mature. Nucleated RBCs (NRBC, normoblasts) are a very immature form of RBCs seen when there is a severe demand for RBCs to be released by the bone marrow or marrow involvement by fibrosis or tumor;

What does it mean if your Nucleated red blood cell (NRBC) result is too high?

They may be seen in:

  • severe anemia,
  • myelofibrosis,
  • thalassemia,
  • miliary tuberculosis,
  • cancers that involve the bone marrow,
  • and in chronic low oxygen levels (hypoxemia).

Nucleated RBCs can be normal in infants for a short time after birth.

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