The condition of the nonseptic patients was significantly less severe than that of the septic patients. The SOFA score of septic patients and the nonseptic patients was 6 (3 to 18) and 2.5 (1 to 8), respectively (median (IQR), P = 0.02). The overall mortality rate was 29%. After stimulation with PMA, neutrophils isolated from septic patients released 4.08 ± 1.02% of their total DNA, whereas neutrophils from nonseptic patients released 29.06 ± 2.94% (P < 0.0001). Immunofluorescent staining of released DNA, elastase, and myeloperoxidase also revealed similar results. Neutrophils from nonseptic patients showed effective extracellular killing of E. coli through NETs, whereas neutrophils from septic patients did not (P < 0.001). Plasma levels of cf-DNA and histones were higher in septic patients than in nonseptic patients (P < 0.001).