What are monoclonal antibodies?


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03-11-09 05:44 AM
What are monoclonal antibodies?

One of the great things about being a mouse is the fact that mice do not naturally get neuroblastoma.  Mice develop antibodies that attach to neuroblastoma cells thus alerting the immune system to come and kill the tumor cell.  Neuroblastoma cells get killed before they even get a chance to turn into tumors.  These mouse antibodies are smart.  They are able to seek out neuroblastoma cells by detecting a marker (called an antigen) present on the surface of the NB cell called GD2.  GD2 (one of the ?gangliosides?) is present or ?expressed? in most neuroblastoma cases.  You can think of these antibodies as microscopic blood hounds that sniff out the bad guys, and they identify the bad guys by their GD2 ?ID badges?.  Wouldn?t it be nice if children had antibodies which could seek out and destroy neuroblastoma cells?
 /></a><br />This is the whole idea behind ch14.18, 3F8, and other monoclonal antibodies.</p><p><br /><b>What are monoclonal antibodies?</b><br />An antibody, also known as immunoglobulin (Ig), is a Y-shaped protein on the surface of B cells (lymphocyte) that is secreted into the blood or lymph system in response to a foreign substance such as a bacterium, virus, or allergen, and that neutralizes the ?invader? by binding specifically to it. Some antibodies produced are long-lasting, and some only remain in the system a short while.</p><p> <a href= /></a>       <img src= Page 1 of 1 (1 items)