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complements mark enemies as targets

07 Feb

so this article on how the body’s frontline defense decides of a microorganism is an enemy or not was published. ive read the abstract of the paper which was hardly enough and im yearning for more (i’ll need someone from uni to get lend me her/his password for ScienceDirect, but for now, the summary has got to do it, i guess..

the article talks abt how the proteins in the immune system work to mark out foreign cells.

factor H (FH) is a glycoprotein that regulates the activation of complements. one of the complements it regulates is C3b. and scientists found that FH bound 2 C3b to each other and also to the cell surface of the foreign cell. thereby allowing the white blood cells to attack that cell that has been marked. the molecular aspect of this recognition and identification has not been resolved until now. it was found that domain 19 of FH bound to C3b and domain 20 of FH bound to cell surface proteins. the simultaneous binding of these interactions make that cell a target for the WBC. (and yes, suddenly so many questions arise…. and i do need to read up)

as i read this article, i remember learning abt the complement system in immunology couse (BL3225) in NUS. and its frustrating that ive long forgotten most higher order information since i started teaching in sec sch… (its frustrating that all im teaching are that phagocytes engulf pathogens and lymphocytes produce antibodies (honestly, what im teaching the kids is like kindergarden knowledge in comparison to what actually is)- i mean, there’s SOOOO much new information in biology EVERYDAY and yet im teaching what has been taught for like a million years already! i really ought to teach students that what im teaching is just so basic and new information is found everyday. science is way too vast to learn in just a period of 4/5 yrs. I WANT TO STUDY!!!!

anyway, determined to recall what complements are, i flipped through my notes and books, and it brings back sooo much memories!

(ps: this pic has nothing to do with complements. i just found it really attractive that i once learnt all these things abt inflammatory responses.)

still not finding a clue, i went to my textbook… turned to the glossary and searched for ‘complement’ like what i used to do back then..

and there it says, beneath what i underlined, “there are sill unresolved questions as to the exact requirements for alternate pathway initiation …. ”

i wonder if this has been solved. in science, a textbook is only relevant to find out existing information. new information is always only found in publications, which i miss reading, but am glad have gotten back to some of it again.. 😀

immunology wasnt exactly a branch of bio that i was particularly interested in. but i still love that i love bio. 🙂

goodnight world! its back to reality in a few hours!

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Posted by on February 7, 2011 in i-Bio

 

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