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Antibodies are unique to one specific antigen. An antibodies main role is the defence against any foreign bodies.There are different characteristics of antigens and antibodies that affect the human immune response (Antibody 2010).

  • Neutralising antibodies - prevent the antigen from having the desired effect on the immune system
  • Sustaining antibodies - work to maintain the effect of the antigen
  • Clearing antibodies - increase the speed in which antigens are removed from the system.
  • Cross-reactive antibodies - bind to endogenous proteins

Any of these antibodies can create responses in which a patient may incur complications or develop chronic conditions (Beaver 2010).


Antibody isotypes of mammals

IgA
2
Found in mucosal areas, such as the gut, respiratory tractand urogenital tract, and prevents colonization bypathogens. Also found in saliva, tears, and breast milk.
Some antibodies form complexes that bind to multiple antigen molecules.
Some antibodies form complexes that bind to multiple antigen molecules.

IgD
1
Functions mainly as an antigen receptor on B cells that have not been exposed to antigens. It has been shown to activate basophils and mast cells to produce antimicrobial factors.
IgE
1
Binds to allergens and triggers histamine release from mast cells and basophils, and is involved in allergy. Also protects against parasitic worms.
IgG
4
In its four forms, provides the majority of antibody-based immunity against invading pathogens. The only antibody capable of crossing the placenta to give passive immunity to fetus.
IgM
1
Expressed on the surface of B cells and in a secreted form with very high avidity. Eliminates pathogens in the early stages of B cell mediated (humoral) immunity before there is sufficient IgG.


Other factors that effect immunogenicity include:

- Autoimmune disorders
- UV radiation
- Immunosuppression
- Adjuvants



Factors effecting immunogenicity Autoimmune disorders : Ultraviolet radiation Immunosuppression: Adjuvants Contributed by Sidharsha Naidoo