Immunology Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Immunology?
Immunology is the branch of biomedical science that deals with the study of the immune system. It is responsible for protecting the body from harmful agents, including bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi. The immune system consists of a variety of different organs and tissues which work together to protect against disease-causing organisms and other foreign substances. Immunology studies how these diverse elements interact to provide protection against infection, as well as how they can be manipulated to treat or prevent diseases.The immune system works by recognizing foreign invaders and producing an appropriate response to eliminate them from the body. This response is achieved through a complex network of cells and molecules which communicate with each other in order to differentiate between self and non-self antigens (molecules capable of provoking an immune response). When an antigen is identified, it triggers a series of reactions involving several types of cells such as B-cells, T-cells, macrophages and dendritic cells which all work together to fight off any foreign invaders. Immunology also studies how certain diseases can affect the normal function of the immune system such as HIV/AIDS or cancer. In such cases, immunotherapy can be used to boost immunity so that it is able to fight off these diseases more effectively. Vaccinations are another way in which immunology has been used successfully in humans over many years – by introducing weakened forms of certain pathogens into our bodies we are able to train our own defenses so that they are better prepared for future encounters with similar pathogens. Overall, immunology plays an important role in medicine by providing us with a greater understanding about how our bodies defend themselves from various illnesses – this knowledge allows us not only diagnose but also potentially prevent or even cure certain illnesses based on manipulating our own immunity systems.