The Humoral Immune Response
The Humoral Immune Response (HIR) is the aspect of immunity that is mediated by secreted antibodies (as opposed to cell-mediated immunity, which involves T lymphocytes) produced in the cells of the B lymphocyte lineage (B cell). B Cells (with co-stimulation) transform into plasma cells which secrete antibodies. The co-stimulation of the B cell can come from another antigen presenting cell, like a dendritic cell. This entire process is aided by CD4+ T-helper 2 cells, which provide co-stimulation. Secreted antibodies bind to antigens on the surfaces of invading microbes (such as viruses or bacteria), which flags them for destruction. Humoral immunity is so named because it involves substances found in the humours, or body fluids.
The study of the molecular and cellular components that comprise the immune system, including their function and interaction, is the central science of immunology. The immune system is divided into a more primitive innate immune system, and acquired or adaptive immune system of vertebrates, each of which contains humoral and cellular components.
Humoral immunity refers to antibody production and the accessory processes that accompany it, including: Th2 activation and cytokine production, germinal center formation and isotype switching, affinity maturation and memory cell generation. It also refers to the effector functions of antibody, which include pathogen and toxin neutralization, classical complement activation, and opsonin promotion of phagocytosis and pathogen elimination
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