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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing – Basic Serology/Immunology Cecile Sanders, M.Ed., MT(ASCP), CLS (NCA) Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology The Immune System Complex system of tissues, cells, cell products, & biologically active chemicals

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Unit 6c clinical laboratory testing basic serology immunology l.jpg

Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing – Basic Serology/Immunology

Cecile Sanders, M.Ed., MT(ASCP),

CLS (NCA)


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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

  • The Immune System

    • Complex system of tissues, cells, cell products, & biologically active chemicals

    • Produces an Immune Response

    • Defense mechanism against foreign substances called “antigens” (ag)


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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

  • Natural Resistance vs. Specific Immunity

    • Natural Resistance

      • Includes physical barriers (skin, mucous membranes, etc.), white blood cells like neutrophils, and proteins that cause inflammation

      • Non-specific

      • Does not require exposure to an antigen


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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

  • Specific Immune Response

    • Recognition – recognizes foreign antigens and distinguishes them from “self”

    • Specificity – reacts with a specific antigen without reacting with others

    • Memory – “anamnestic response”


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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

  • Cells, Tissues, and Organs of Immune System

    • Lymphocytes – B Cells and T Cells

    • Primary Lymphoid Organs = Bone Marrow and Thymus (glandular

      tissue located

      at the base of the

      sternum)


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Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

  • Secondary Lymphoid Tissue = Spleen, Lymph Nodes, Appendix, and Tonsils

  • Humoral Immunity

    • B Lymphocytes produce antibodies against specific antigens

    • Good protection against bacteria, toxins, and circulating antigens

  • Cell-Mediated Immunity

    • T Lymphocytes protect against viruses, fungi, tumor cells, and intracellular organisms


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Immunoglobulins (Ig)

      • Also called “antibodies” (ab)

      • Named by placing the prefix anti before the name of the antigen with which the antibody reacts


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Primary vs. Secondary Antibody Response

      • Primary occurs after first exposure to an antigen

      • Secondary Response

        • Sometimes called “anamnestic response”

        • Lymphocytes remember the antigen

        • Immunizations or vaccinations (such as for measles, tetanus, etc.) are effective because of the Secondary Response

      • Seroconversion = when an antibody is detectable in patient who has previously tested negative for the antibody


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    First and Second Responses to Antigens


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Categories of Conditions Associated with Immune System Abnormalities

      • Autoimmune Disease (RA, Lupus, Juvenile Type I Diabetes, Myasthenia Gravis)

      • Hypersensitivies (Hay fever, Asthma, Dermatitis)

      • Malignancies (Lymphomas, Leukemias, Multiple Myeloma)


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Categories of Conditions Associated with Immune System Abnormalities (cont’d)

      • Acquired Immunodeficiencies (Infections, Systemic Disease, Malignancies, Reactions to Drugs, Irradiation)

      • Congenital Immunodeficiencies (DiGeorge Syndrome, Aggamaglobulinemia, SCID – Severe Combined Immune Deficiency)


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Tests of Immune Function

      • Based on Antigen-Antibody Reactions

        • May be qualitative (positive or negative)

        • May be quantitative (Titer = Reciprocal of the highest dilution of patient’s serum showing a positive reaction with antigen)

      • Principles of Immunological Tests

        • Agglutination and Agglutination Inhibition – visible clumping of cells or particles due to their reaction with an antibody


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    Agglutination of Red Blood Cells with Antibody


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Principles of Immunological Tests (cont’d)

      • Precipitation – formation of an insoluble complex when a specific antibody is reacted with a soluble antigen (usually in a gelatin-like substance)


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    • Principles of Immunological Tests (cont’d)

      • Labeled Antibody Techniques – Molecules (labels) are attached to the antibodies, producing a visible reaction. Labels may be dyes, enzymes or radioisotopes.


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    Enzyme Linked Immunoassay (ELISA)


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    Unit #6C – Clinical Laboratory Testing - Basic Serology/Immunology

    Visit this website for a virtual immunology lab visit and experiment:

    http://www.hhmi.org/biointeractive/vlabs/immunology/index.html

    Try to complete the lab by following website directions! Very cool!


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