Oncology & Cancer

Why some melanoma patients do not respond to immunotherapy

By harnessing the immune system against cancer, immunotherapies have revolutionized the way some types of cancer are treated. But most patients—across cancer types—do not respond, and in most cases, scientists are at ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Could our immune system be why COVID-19 is so deadly?

Respiratory viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 (causing COVID-19) can often catalyze an overactive immune response that leads to a life-threatening cycle, known as a cytokine storm. Analyzing cytokine responses from patients infected ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Can vaccinated people still spread the coronavirus?

So you've gotten your coronavirus vaccine, waited the two weeks for your immune system to respond to the shot and are now fully vaccinated. Does this mean you can make your way through the world like the old days without ...

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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