Skip to main content

immunology

immunology, branch of medicine that studies the response of organisms to foreign substances, e.g., viruses, bacteria, and bacterial toxins (see immunity). Immunologists study the tissues and organs of the immune system (bone marrow, spleen, tonsils, thymus, lymphatic system), its specialized cells (e.g., B and T lymphocytes and antibodies), and the influence of genetic, nutritional, and other factors on the immune system. They also study disease-causing organisms to determine how they injure the host and help to develop vaccines (see vaccination).

In addition to studying the normal workings of the immune system, immunologists study unwanted immune responses such as allergies, essentially immunological responses of the body to substances or organisms that, as a rule, do not affect most people, and autoimmune diseases (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis and lupus erythematosus) which occur when the body reacts immunologically to some of its own constituents.

Immunologists have developed a large number of procedures have been developed to detect and measure quantities of immunologically active substances such as circulating antibodies and immune globulins. Immune globulins that can be given intravenously (IVIGs) have been found to be more effective against antibody deficiencies and certain autoimmune diseases than their older intramuscular counterparts; their use in a wide spectrum of bacterial and viral infections is under study. Current research in immunology is also aimed at understanding the role of T lymphocytes (see immunity), which play a major part in the body's defenses against infections and neoplasms. AIDS, for example, is the disease that results when the HIV virus destroys certain of these T cells.

See studies by R. Desowitz (1988) and R. Gallo (1991).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"immunology." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"immunology." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/immunology

"immunology." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved May 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/immunology

immunology

im·mu·nol·o·gy / ˌimyəˈnäləjē/ • n. the branch of medicine and biology concerned with immunity. DERIVATIVES: im·mu·no·log·ic / ˌimyənəˈläjik; iˌmyoō-/ adj. im·mu·no·log·i·cal / ˌimyənəˈläjikəl; iˌmyoō-/ adj. im·mu·no·log·i·cal·ly / ˌimyənəˈläjik(ə)lē; iˌmyoō-/ adv. im·mu·nol·o·gist / -jist/ n.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"immunology." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"immunology." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology-0

"immunology." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved May 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology-0

immunology

immunology Study of immunity and allergy. It is concerned with the preventing disease by vaccination – active immunity; or by injections of antibodies – passive immunity. Allergic reactions result from an overactive response to harmless foreign substances such as dust, rather than to infective organisms.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"immunology." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"immunology." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/immunology

"immunology." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved May 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/immunology

immunology

immunology (im-yoo-nol-ŏji) n. the study of immunity and all of the phenomena connected with the defence mechanisms of the body.
immunological adj.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"immunology." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"immunology." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology

"immunology." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Retrieved May 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology

immunology

immunology •haji • algae • Angie •argy-bargy, Panaji •edgy, sedgy, solfeggi, veggie, wedgie •cagey, stagy •mangy, rangy •Fiji, gee-gee, squeegee •Murrumbidgee, ridgy, squidgy •dingy, fringy, mingy, stingy, whingy •cabbagy • prodigy • effigy • villagey •porridgy • strategy • cottagey •dodgy, podgy, splodgy, stodgy •pedagogy •Georgie, orgy •ogee • Fuji •bhaji, budgie, pudgy, sludgy, smudgy •bulgy •bungee, grungy, gungy, scungy, spongy •allergy, analogy, genealogy, hypallage, metallurgy, mineralogy, tetralogy •elegy •antilogy, trilogy •aetiology (US etiology), amphibology, anthology, anthropology, apology, archaeology (US archeology), astrology, biology, campanology, cardiology, chronology, climatology, cosmology, craniology, criminology, dermatology, ecology, embryology, entomology, epidemiology, etymology, geology, gynaecology (US gynecology), haematology (US hematology), hagiology, horology, hydrology, iconology, ideology, immunology, iridology, kidology, meteorology, methodology, musicology, mythology, necrology, neurology, numerology, oncology, ontology, ophthalmology, ornithology, parasitology, pathology, pharmacology, phraseology, phrenology, physiology, psychology, radiology, reflexology, scatology, Scientology, seismology, semiology, sociology, symbology, tautology, technology, terminology, theology, topology, toxicology, urology, zoology • eulogy • energy • synergy • apogee • liturgy • lethargy •burgee, clergy •zymurgy • dramaturgy

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"immunology." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"immunology." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 25, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology

"immunology." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved May 25, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/immunology