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Anime Collides with Academics to Start off the School Year

The+anime+show+%22Cells+at+Work%22%27s+poster+features+various+characters+in+the+series.++A+red+blood+cell+carries+a+package+while+a+white+blood+cell+spots+a+germ.+The+background+also+includes+other+lesser+known+cells+such+as+killer+T+cells%2C+B+cells%2C+macrophages%2C+Eosinophil+granulocytes%2C+and+dendritic+cells.%0A
The anime show

The anime show "Cells at Work"'s poster features various characters in the series. A red blood cell carries a package while a white blood cell spots a germ. The background also includes other lesser known cells such as killer T cells, B cells, macrophages, Eosinophil granulocytes, and dendritic cells.

The anime show "Cells at Work"'s poster features various characters in the series. A red blood cell carries a package while a white blood cell spots a germ. The background also includes other lesser known cells such as killer T cells, B cells, macrophages, Eosinophil granulocytes, and dendritic cells.

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Suppose you wanted to prepare for your biology class. You do a Google search for  “cells,” and anime pops up among the other typical biology knowledge.

So what is “Cells at Work?”

“Cells at Work,” or “Hataraku Saibo,” is an anime television series based on a comic by Akane Shimizu. The story takes place inside the human body “metropolitan,” where roughly 37.2 trillion cells are working hard everyday to keep the body healthy. The animation personifies every cell. The show features a massive, bustling city in which red blood cells are the delivery workers, white blood cells are the police, and other immune cells are the military.

The main character is a rookie red blood cell, who often gets lost in the crowded veins. The audience follows this cell as she travels around the body, encountering different scenarios at each organ with distinct cells that tackle the problem at hand.

After its release in July, the show went viral across the internet and became widely accepted among students interested in biology. Its novel topic challenged the previously unbreakable line between anime and academics. It has been featured on several news channels, websites, and blogs, and it has opened up a new world to people without experience in anime. Though intended to be an entertaining show, it delves deep into the science behind the human body. Experienced or not, everyone can learn a lot from its vivid stories.

In one episode, the pollen allergy is depicted as immune cells panicking when unknown enemies travel into the respiratory system. The command center general, an assistant T cell, anticipated a massive disaster, while memory T cells told the tales of earthquakes and volcano eruptions (sneezes and running noses) from previous similar experiences. The immune system workers ran around, working at maximum capacity to try and stop the predicted disasters, not knowing they themselves caused the allergy. This specific episode offered a vivid explanation of how allergic reactions happen in our body.

“Cells at Work” personifies cells not only to promote learning but also to provoke reflection. If Earth was a giant creature, would we humans be more like the lawful, diligent red blood cells or the endlessly reproducing cancer cells?

 

 

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Anime Collides with Academics to Start off the School Year