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Antibodies, also known as immunoglobulins (Ig), are proteins produced by the immune system in response to the presence of foreign substances called antigens. These antigens can be anything from viruses and bacteria to toxins and other foreign substances. Antibodies are highly specific in their shape. They recognise and bind to particular antigens, marking them for destruction by other components of the immune system or neutralising their harmful effects directly. Antibodies play a crucial role in defending the body against infections and diseases. They come in various classes (IgG, IgM, IgA, IgE, and IgD), each with specific functions and roles in the immune response. In addition to their role in immunity, antibodies are also used in various diagnostic and therapeutic applications, such as in ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) tests, Western blotting, and immunotherapy for treating diseases like cancer and autoimmune disorders.


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This entry was provided by the doctoral students of the GetRADI collaborative network. GetRADI is funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Executive Agency. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

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