Monday, 9 February 2015

IMMUNOLOGY: Important abbrevations & key terminologies.

Adaptive cells – those that rearrange their genes
ADCC- antibody dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity.  A process where white blood cells recognize the stems of antibodies attached to a cell and then attack it.
Allele- A version of the gene.  There are two alleles for the enzyme that produces color in four o’clock flowers, one that codes for an enzyme used to make red pigment and a different DNA sequence that does not produce a functional enzyme, leaving the flower white.
ALT – associated lymphoid tissue. MALT (mucosal), GALT (gut), BALT (bronchial), NALT (nasal)
Antibody- a soluble immunoglobulin
Antigen- a molecule that can bind to an antibody, B cell receptor or T cell receptor
APC – antigen presenting cell.  Cells that present antigen on MHC II to TH cells
Apoptosis – programmed cell death
ATP- adenosine triphosphate, directly supplies energy to many biological reactions
BSA – bovine serum albumin.  A smallish soluble protein isolated from cow’s blood.
CAM – cell adhesion molecule.  Any one of a number of different molecules that help stick cells together.
CD – cluster of differentiation.  Refers to the isolation of cells by flow cytometry.  Depending on exactly what proteins extend from a cell’s surface, which in turn influences how the cell moves during the separation process.
CDR- complementarity determining region- the recognition side on the tips of the antibody arms Chitin – cell wall material of fungi, also an important component of insect exoskeletons. 
Chordate – member of the phylum Chordata.  Includes vertebrates and invertebrates with a dorsal nerve cord, gill slits, notochord and muscles in blocks.
CLP – common lymphoid progenitor.  Gives rise to lymphoid cells, including NK, T cells, B cells, and more.
CMP – common myeloid progenitor.  Stem cell that can give rise to any myeloid cell type (including red blood cells and platelets.
Coley toxin – inflammatory material isolated from bacteria used in cancer chemotherapy around 1900.
Complement- a system of proteins that helps identify pathogens and debris for destruction and phagocytosis (the landmines of the plasma.)
CTL – Cytotoxic T cell.  Activated TC cell, ready to kill rogue-self cells
Downstream- the end of the DNA or RNA with the free 3’ carbon of the (deoxy) ribose.  Nucleic acid synthesis and translation proceeds 5’ to 3’.
Epitope – the specific portion of a molecule that binds to an adaptive receptor. For example, a viral protein is an antigen whose different epitopes bind to different antibody idiotypes.
Exon- the part of a gene that codes for a sequence of RNA that will wind up in a message and get translated (expressed.)  A gene or gene region may have one to many exons.
Gene region – a sequence of DNA coding for a specific part of the Ig or T-cell receptor. Granulocytes – Cells with copious granular inclusions and that do not present antigen.  Includes neutrophils, basophils, and eosinophils (which have oddly-shaped nuclei) and mast cells (which do not).
Hapten- a molecule that could potentially bind a CDR, but by itself is not large enough to kick off an immune response.
HSC- hematopoietic stem cell.  Can divide and regenerate of develop into any type of blood cell.  Found in bone marrow.
Humoral response – Immune defense found in the plasma, the word humor derived from the ancient Greek medical theory of body fluids. It really just refers to antibodies.  Stupid term.  If people stop using it, maybe it will go away.
Hybridoma- a cell or cell line derived for the fusion of a blood cell cancer (myeloma) and a normal, antibody-producing plasma (B lineage) cell.
Idiotype – a category of antibodies that all have the same recognition region.
Innate cells – those that do not rearrange genes.
Introns- that DNA sequences of the gene that code for RNA sequences that get clipped out during processing.
Isotype- a category of antibodies of the same class
Lymphoid cells – white blood cell types (innate and adaptive) found in the lymph and (and blood and immune organs as well).
MAC- membrane attack complex- terminal complement pathway produces this, which punches holes in plasma membranes.
MASP- mannose associated protein
MBL- mannose binding lectin
MHC- Major Histocompatibility Complex.  Includes the genes and the proteins they code for.  These include the proteins (groups I and II) that hold small peptides so that T cells can recognize them.  They also include a variety of other proteins, including enzymes important in immune recognition and promotion.  The human versions are names HLA molecules for human lymphocyte antigen.   Monoclonal- refers to a cell line of (theoretically) identical cells derived from the division of a single cell.
Myeloid cells – innate white blood cells rarely found in the lymph.
Necrosis- cell death from disease or injury
NK cell- Natural Killer cell. Kills rogue-self cells, recognizing them by innate mechanisms.  Does not require TH activation.
N-nucleotide addition- During gene rearrangement, when enzymes add nucleotides at random in the palindromic regions of the joint.
NOD – nucleotide oligomer detectors. Soluble pattern recognition receptors found in the cytoplasm of cells.  Despite the name, they often recognize cell wall materials.
Nucleic acid – RNA or DNA
Peptidoglycan – mesh-like macromolecules that compose the basic structure of the bacterial cell wall.
Phagocytosis – when a cell engulf large particles
Pinocytosis - when a cell gathers fluid in a vesicle and engulf the vesicle.
P-nucleotide addition- During gene rearrangement, when enzymes fill in the missing nucleotides at the joint by copying the palindromic nucleotides on the other strand.
Receptor-mediated endocytosis –  when a cell binds material at its surface using a proteins receptor and then internalized the complex into a vesicle that enters the cell.
RSS – recombination signal sequence.  The sequence of 28 or 40 nucleotides that the upstream or downstream end of a gene region providing the signals for gene rearrangement.
Simple sugar – single sugar unit, includes glucose, mannose and galactose.  May be modified into sugar units as sialic acid (NANA) or N-acetyl glucosamine.
Tc cell- cells that recognize rogue self-cells by antigen they present on MHC I.  They develop into CTLs after instructions from TH cells.
TCR – T-cell receptor.
Found extending from the surface of both TC and TH cells. Recognizes antigen, coded for by rearranged genes.
Th cell- thyroid helper cell.  Coordinates immune responses.  Th2 cells promote a serious response; Th2 promotes a containment response, and Treg tolerance.  There are additional types as well.
TLR – Toll-like receptors.  Pattern recognition receptors that recognize molecules characteristic of pathogens.  Found embedded in plasma membrane and endomembranes of many white blood cells.  Transcription factor – a protein that either up- or down- regulates the copying of RNA (transcription) from DNA.  They often have domains that attach to specific sequences of DNA nucleotides.  Some attach to other proteins that attach to the DNA. Or both.
Upstream- the end of the DNA or RNA with the free 5’ carbon of the (deoxy) ribose. Nucleic acid synthesis and translation proceeds 5’ to 3’.
Zymosan – cell wall material of fungi.


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