This short article on antiserum deals exclusively with its applications. For a more detailed explanation on its production see "polyclonal antibodies".

Antiserum (plural: antisera) is blood serum containing polyclonal antibodies. Antiserum is used to pass on passive immunity to many diseases. Passive antibody transfusion from a previous human survivor is the only effective treatment for Ebola infection.

How it works

Antibodies in the antiserum bind the infectious agent. The immune system then recognizes foreign agents bound to antibodies and triggers a more robust immune response. The use of antiserum is particularly effective against pathogens which are capable of evading the immune system in the unstimulated state but which are not robust enough to evade the stimulated immune system. The existence of antibodies to the agent therefore depends on an initial "lucky survivor" whose immune system by chance discovered a counteragent to the pathogen, or a "host species" which carries the virus but does not suffer from its effects. Further stocks of antiserum can then be produced from the initial donor or from a donor organism that is inoculated with the pathogen and cured by some stock of preexisting antiserum.

Mutations in the pathogen can decrease or eliminate the effectiveness of antiserum.

See also

* antitoxin

External links


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • antisérum — [ ɑ̃tiserɔm ] n. m. • 1960; de 1. anti et sérum ♦ Sérum d un animal immunisé par injection d un antigène, contenant l anticorps correspondant. ● antisérum nom masculin Synonyme de immun sérum. ● antisérum (synonymes) nom masculin Synonymes :… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • antiserum — antiserum. См. антисыворотка. (Источник: «Англо русский толковый словарь генетических терминов». Арефьев В.А., Лисовенко Л.А., Москва: Изд во ВНИРО, 1995 г.) …   Молекулярная биология и генетика. Толковый словарь.

  • antiserum — [an′ti sir΄əm, an′tīsir΄əm] n. pl. antiserums or antisera a serum containing antibodies specific for one or more antigens …   English World dictionary

  • Antiserum — Ein Immunserum oder Impfserum ist eine Aufreinigung spezifischer Antikörper, die aus dem Blutserum immunisierter anderer Säugetiere (heterologes Immunserum) oder Menschen (homologes Immunserum) gewonnen werden. Im Zusammenhang mit der Behandlung… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Antiserum — Ạn|ti|se|rum 〈n.; s, se|ren; Med.〉 Heilserum [<grch. anti „gegen“ + Serum] * * * An|ti|se|rum, das; s, …ren od. …ra (Med.): spezifische Antikörper enthaltendes Heilserum. * * * Antis …   Universal-Lexikon

  • antiserum — is., tıp, Fr. antisérum Bağışık serum …   Çağatay Osmanlı Sözlük

  • antiserum — noun Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary Date: 1901 a serum containing antibodies …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • antiserum — a blood serum with specific antibodies …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • antiserum — (an tī se rum) Serum containing induced antibodies …   Dictionary of microbiology

  • antiserum — Serum containing immunoglobulins against specified antigens …   Dictionary of molecular biology

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