Phagocytic cells respond to invading bacteria, regulate the inflammatory response, defend against parasites and play a role in allergic reactions. There are three different cells that work as phagocytes, including eosinophils, neutrophils and monocytes, all of which are white blood cells.
Phagocytes go to work when foreign invaders, such as bacteria, viruses and parasites, enter the body and activate the immune system's inflammatory response, which sends phagocytes to the area of inflammation. The phagocytes work to maintain and destroy the foreign invader, causing the inflammation by destroying and ingesting them. Neutrophils are the first responders, and they initiate the phagocytic process.