Related topics: immune system

New tuberculosis tests pave way for cow vaccination programs

Skin tests that can distinguish between cattle that are infected with tuberculosis (TB) and those that have been vaccinated against the disease have been created by an international team of scientists. The traditional TB ...

Japanese scientists embrace creepy-crawlies

Firms in Japan are changing people's perceptions about common spiders, worms and insect larvae. These seemingly unwanted creatures have unique features that could be useful for many applications that benefit humans, according ...

Nanotechnology delivers hepatitis B vaccine

Brazilian and European researchers have demonstrated exactly how a nanotechnology-based compound delivers an oral vaccine against hepatitis B to the immune system. When particles containing silica and an antigen combine, ...

Pharmaconutrition: Modern drug design for functional studies

Antonella Di Pizio and Maik Behrens of the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology at the Technical University of Munich, together with their cooperation partners, have developed highly effective activators for the bitter ...

page 1 from 23

Immunity (medical)

Immunity is a biological term that describes a state of having sufficient biological defenses to avoid infection, disease, or other unwanted biological invasion. Immunity involves both specific and non-specific components. The non-specific components act either as barriers or as eliminators of wide range of pathogens irrespective of antigenic specificity. Other components of the immune system adapt themselves to each new disease encountered and are able to generate pathogen-specific immunity.

Adaptive immunity is often sub-divided into two major types depending on how the immunity was introduced. Naturally acquired immunity occurs through contact with a disease causing agent, when the contact was not deliberate, whereas artificially acquired immunity develops only through deliberate actions such as vaccination. Both naturally and artificially acquired immunity can be further subdivided depending on whether immunity is induced in the host or passively transferred from a immune host. Passive immunity is acquired through transfer of antibodies or activated T-cells from an immune host, and is short lived, usually lasts only a few months, whereas active immunity is induced in the host itself by antigen, and lasts much longer, sometimes life-long. The diagram below summarizes these divisions of immunity.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA