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Humoral Immunity

Humoral Immunity

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The humoral immune response, also known as antibody-mediated immunity, is a fancy term for how our body fights off sickness. When our body detects antigens, which are harmful substances, it activates the immune system. B cell lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell, create memory B cells and effector B cells. Memory B cells remember the sickness, so if it comes back, our body can quickly produce antibodies to fight it off. Effector B cells release antibodies, which are proteins that fight the antigens. Think of them like little soldiers that protect our body.

The types of humoral immunity

There are two types of humoral immunity: active and passive.

Active humoral immunity

Have you ever wondered how your body fights off sickness? Well, it's thanks to the humoral immune response, also known as antibody-mediated immunity. Basically, when your body detects harmful substances called antigens, it activates the immune system. One type of white blood cell, called B cell lymphocytes, jump into action by creating memory B cells and effector B cells. Memory B cells are like little disease detectives that remember the sickness. So if it comes back, your body can quickly produce antibodies to fight it off. Effector B cells release antibodies, which are proteins that fight the antigens like tiny soldiers that protect your body.

Passive humoral immunity

Passive humoral immunity is when an organism gets antibodies from another organism. It's not as strong as active humoral immunity and usually only lasts a few months. There are two types of passive humoral immunity: natural and artificial.

Natural passive humoral immunity happens when a mother passes antibodies to her baby through breast milk or through the placenta to her fetus.

Artificial passive immunity, on the other hand, is when someone gets immunized through vaccination. This provides immediate protection, but it doesn't always last forever. You can get vaccinated by your doctor or at a healthcare facility. It's a great way to keep yourself protected from sickness, but it's important to remember that it's not a guarantee against all diseases.

Role of B cells in the immune system

B cells are a special type of white blood cell that are created in the bone marrow. They produce important proteins called antibodies that neutralize harmful pathogens by binding to them. These antibodies are called neutralizing antibodies and can block a virus' attachment to healthy cells, bind to a capsid protein, or prevent a pathogen from changing shape.

When B cells encounter antigens, they can turn into either memory B cells or effector B cells. Effector B cells, also known as plasma cells, create antibodies that are specific to the antigen. Each effector B cell makes a unique antibody for one type of antigen. They don't live as long as memory B cells and require help from T cells to divide into plasma cells.

Memory B cells play an essential role in helping the immune system remember the pathogens that have entered the body. This means that if they come back, the immune cells can produce antibodies faster. Memory B cells are long-term immunity cells and can live for up to two decades. If someone gets vaccinated against chickenpox, they can have memory B cells for 10-20 years! With its ability to create unique antibodies for different pathogens, B cells are an incredibly powerful weapon in the body's immune system arsenal.

Difference between B and T cells in the immune system

The immune system is comprised of different types of cells that work together to protect the body from harmful pathogens. Two essential types of cells in the immune system are B cells and T cells.

B cells are responsible for recognising antigens on the surface of pathogens, while T cells recognise antigens expressed on the membrane of infected cells. There are two types of B cells: memory B cells and effector B cells.

T cells are categorised into four types: helper T cells, memory T cells, cytotoxic T cells, and regulatory T cells. Helper T cells activate immune system cells, memory T cells remember previous infections, cytotoxic T cells destroy pathogens, and regulatory T cells help stop immune response processes.

Effector T cells are produced when naïve T cells receive signals to transform. They have a short lifespan.

Memory T cells remember pathogens and can fight them faster the next time they are found in the body.

Autoimmune diseases occur when T cells attack our own cells. Examples include Crohn’s disease, lupus, and type I diabetes.

B cells play a crucial role in the humoral immune response, creating antibodies that can be produced by effector B cells or remembered by memory B cells. Memory B cells can live for years or even a lifetime in an organism. The immune system is a complex system that works tirelessly to keep us healthy and protected from harmful pathogens.

Humoral Immunity

What is humoral immunity?

The humoral immune response, also known as antibody-mediated immunity, is part of the adaptive immune system and is activated when antigens are found in the body.

During the immune response, what do B lymphocytes differentiate into?

They differentiate into effector B cells and memory B cells. 

Compare the role of B and T lymphocytes in the immune response.

B cells produce antibodies and T cells use apoptosis to rid the body of pathogens.

What immune response is brought about by B lymphocytes?

The humoral immune response.

How are B lymphocytes activated?

B lymphocytes are activated by antigens found inside the body.

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