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Do You Know How Active and Passive Immunity Work to Keep You Healthy?

Passive immunity

Passive immunity refers to the creation of immunity by introducing antibodies from outside the organism, such as the injection of antivenom after having been bitten by a snake.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Do You Know How Active and Passive Immunity Work to Keep You Healthy?

Do You Know How Active and Passive Immunity Work to Keep You Healthy?

https://www.thoughtco.com/active-immunity-and-passive-immunity-4134137

thoughtco.com

6

Key Ideas

Our Immunity

Immunity is defined as the set of defenses, that our bodies possess, which has the role to protect us against pathogens and to fight against infections.

Immunity categories

There are several immunity categories:

  • Nonspecific defenses: these work against all foreign matter and pathogens
  • Specific defenses: these are specialized in fighting against particular threats
  • Innate immunity: natural immunity that protects one from birth until death
  • Acquired immunity: it is the third line of defense, which offers protection against specific types of pathogens.

Active immunity

By active immunity, we generally understand the resistance that our immune system shows against pathogens.

By the so-called 'clonal selection', enough antibodies are built up in order to help our organism fight off colds or different diseases.

Active immunity features

  • The need to be exposed to a pathogen or to the antigen of a pathogen, which leads to the production of antibodies
  • The cells involved are of three types: T cells, B cells and anti-presenting cells
  • Immunity is acquired after several exposures to the antigen
  • Active immunity can last up to an entire life
  • This type of immunity can cause at most some autoimmune disease and allergies, however, there are no issues generally.

Passive immunity

Passive immunity refers to the creation of immunity by introducing antibodies from outside the organism, such as the injection of antivenom after having been bitten by a snake.

Passive immunity features

Among the features of passive immunity, the most known are:

  • This type of immunity does not require exposure to antigen or to an infectious agent
  • The response to an infectious agent is immediate
  • The immunity is effective on short term
  • The so-called 'serum sickness' is one of the effects of the exposure to antisera.

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Our immune system

The immune system does an outstanding job most of the time. To provide such excellent protection against bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi, our immune system must continuously learn.

Innate immunity

Innate immunity cells quickly respond to invaders and can deal with over 90% of infections.
These cells recognize invaders by looking for broadly shared patterns, such as common molecules on the surface of most bacteria.

Adaptive immunity

When the innate response fails to deal with an invasion, the adaptive immunity takes over. The adaptive cell looks for a specific pattern. It could be a particular protein on the surface of a virus or bacteria.

There are millions of adaptive immune cells, each to recognize a different pattern. When they recognize an invader, they multiply to form an army to kill it. This process can take a week when a new invader infects us. After the invader is removed, the adaptive cells that recognized it are kept as specialized memory cells.

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